Committee meets to discuss new jail wing

First Byline: 
Jonathan Vickery - Staff Writer

Jail and county officials met with an architect Friday afternoon as they try to finalize plans for a new wing at the Barnwell County Detention Center.
Architect Jim Stewart discussed plans for the jail with the sheriff, jail administrator Deloris Charlton, and officials from the county, including County Councilmen Keith Sloan and Harold Buckmon.
Replacing the oldest wing of the jail, which opened in 1950, has been the topic of discussion in recent years. The outdated building is plagued with plumbing and other issues.
"There are a lot of safety issues," said Barnwell County Sheriff Ed Carroll after the Feb. 28 judicial committee meeting.
"It's been a long time coming and is desperately needed," agreed Charlton.
The new wing would be added on to the fire department side of the Pickens unit, the newest section built in 2004 that is named for the county administrator. The old section, which houses females and sentenced inmates, would not be torn down until the new one is operational, said the sheriff.
"I'm good with the plans," said Carroll, though there are still things to work out.
The sheriff's main concern is the Sally Port - the secure location where inmates are brought in. Stewart said they could probably leave the current one up until construction is complete. If not, the sheriff said they would have to install fencing to help with security.
It's unclear at this time when construction will start because many details need to be worked out, said Williams.
The project will be funded by a $10 million installment purchase revenue bond county council approved last year. The bond will also pay off renovation costs for the administration building.