BENTON COUNTY, ARKANSAS, Ark. — The Benton County Intergovernmental Cooperation Council unanimously adopted a resolution in support to expand and operate the Benton County Jail on the upcoming November ballot.
In a press release, the council recognized the continued population growth in Benton County has put a strain on the jail facilities and has led to overcrowding.
A jail expansion would add facilities, access to mental health assessments, drug and alcohol rehab programs and other improvements in Benton County.
Voters will decide whether to support the expansion and operation of the criminal justice facility in Benton County through two ballot initiatives in November.
The first initiative will ask voters to support a county-wide one-fourth (.25%) sales and use tax to operate and maintain the jail facility.
The second initiative will ask voters to support levying a county-wide one-eighth (.125%) sales and use tax for the purpose of financing the criminal justice expansion. The one-eighth sales and use tax will expire after the principal amount of improvements and construction has been paid off.
"I am thankful the mayors of our great communities have recognized the importance of preserving our quality of life here in Benton County, and ensuring the safety of our families in the future,” said Benton County Sheriff Shawn Holloway.
"The unanimous passage of this resolution is a resounding message to all Benton County citizens that our mayors and police departments support the critical role a safe, right-sized and well-run jail plays in our ability to ensure public safety and protect our quality of life," said Benton County Judge Barry Moehring.
The Benton County Intergovernmental Cooperation Council is a combination of the 20 cities within Benton County, the Benton County Judge, and the Benton County Clerk. The Council meets annually to review and discuss services and issues relevant to the public.
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