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Bourbon County Jail opens its doors to the public as a way to ed - KOAM TV 7

Bourbon County Jail opens its doors to the public as a way to educate residents about working conditions

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As citizens walk through the inmate pods, Bourbon County Jail administrator Bobby Reed voices his concern.

"The safety that my officers and the inmates face everyday," he said,

This includes overcrowding, poor infrastructure, obstructions and blind spots, and showers and other facilities not up to code, says Reed.  

Both he and Sheriff Bill Martin opened the doors to the facility, allowing the public to see the conditions first hand.  

"Just trying to inform the public, the citizens, that 'this is what we're faced with and I would rather them have an informed decision that we can all sit down and figure out what we need to do."

Martin says he, reed and other jail officials are in the process of meeting with county commissioners about the possibility of building a new facility.

This appeals to some residents.  

"It's an eye opener when you walk through this and see the facility the way it is and how it is was designed in 1977," said Bourbon County resident Steve Walker. "It was probably a state of the art project, but today it's outdated. We need some help here."

But some area residents do not feel a new facility is necessary.  

"No, I don't think they do," said Bourbon County resident Steve Smith. "I spent four days in there."

Both Reed and Sheriff Martin say a modern facility will cut down on overcrowding and also the costs of having to house-out inmates to other county jails.

"And that's a cost to tax payers of $30 to $35 a day per inmate," said Reed.

The jail will be conducting a survey in December to gauge whether more residents are for or against building a new facility.

The survey results will help decide whether the issue of a new jail will have a place on the April ballot.

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