First step in BC jail upgrade complete, second phase underway

Photo: Baxter County Sheriff’s Office jail expansion live video feed Wednesday afternoon.

Last month when the State Fire Marshal’s Office signed off on the newly constructed Baxter County Detention Center expansion, it signaled just the first step in the jail upgrade initiative.

Baxter County Sheriff John Montgomery, appearing on KTLO-FM’s Talk of the Town earlier this week, said when the new construction was turned over to the county, it expanded the facility from 100 to 165 beds. However, the county does not yet have access to 165 beds.


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Sheriff Montgomery says it is anticipated the remodeling will take between 60 and 90 days to complete.

He says even without use of the full facility, the new portion brings needed features not previously available.


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Montgomery noted while other neighboring counties have financed their jail construction projects with sales tax collections stretching from 10 to 15 years, Baxter County’s new construction is completed and paid.



Photo: Aerial view of the Baxter County Detention Center mid-2019 courtesy of Sheriff John Montgomery showing work underway on the expansion.

The county continues to collect a one-quarter percent sales tax for the maintenance and operation of the detention center.


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Baxter County voters overwhelming approved both the one cent sales tax for the construction of the detention center and the one-quarter cent sales tax for on-going operation and maintenance in September 2017.

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