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Clay County officials discuss future of jail, admin buildings

Clay County Sheriff Michelle Cook suggested a 'campus-style complex' similar to the one in Nassau County.

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. — This week, Clay County commissioners reviewed a ten-year plan proposing the future location and design of the county jail, added fire stations and a new public safety administration building. 

Clay County Sheriff Michelle Cook suggested a 'campus-style complex' similar to the one in Nassau County. Cook told commissioners the proposed design will allow the sheriff's office to expand and operate more efficiently. 

"We've got to start moving forward. Piecemealing us into portions of another building or putting 20 people over here, 10 people over here is just not the way to do business," Cook said. 

In the next ten years, proposed plans are for the construction and additions of administrative, sheriff's office and fire rescue buildings. 

"The vision is an operation complex where the majority of the Sheriff's operations are located. 911, the call center, detective division, fleet, storage, supply," she explained.

The plan also includes a proposal for a new jail and funding for eight fire stations. In the first two years, there is about $1.5 million set aside to build out the sheriff's office. By year 10, about $9 million is set aside for the jail. 

"Pulling together all of my operations, and then adding the additional jail space are my priorities," Cook said. "If we can repurpose the first floor of our administrative building and then consolidate some of those other buildings, the first floor of the administrative building can be repurposed for more jail space."

Cook also proposed connecting with businesses to create substations for more convenient access for the public. This plan for the future of the buildings is only proposed. 

She says she's ready to move forward and willing to collaborate with the county to determine what is possible with the funding set aside. 


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