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County OKs jail building bid
Glynn County commissioners voted unanimously Thursday to accept the bid by Allstate Construction to build the new county jail.

The total project budget is $24.2 million, with $20 million coming from the SPLOST 5 budget, and the remainder coming from the general fund balance, which is unspent surplus tax dollars.

The commissioners formally approved the contract at their regularly scheduled session Thursday at the old courthouse.

Jim Ingram, a consultant with Valdosta-based IPG Inc., said he had no reservations about Allstate's ability to complete the project on time and under budget.

Commissioners approved a few changes in the project that will raise the construction costs by about $300,000. The changes were included in the project after the bidding process began.

"I tried to be conservative," Ingram said about the cost estimate for the project.

An Allstate representative told commissioners construction of the new facility will begin in early September.

"We're certainly glad to have you on board," commission chairman Richard Strickland said.

The 616-bed jail will be built on the 34-acre Honeywell tract off U.S. 341 south of Community Road.

On an unrelated matter, commissioners tabled a vote until the council's Aug. 16 meeting on a request to pay thousands of dollars for a conservation easement to spray for mosquitoes on property owned by former Glynn County Commissioner Wayne Hutcheson.

The proposal was initially included on the commission's consent agenda but was taken off when commissioners said they had no idea what the proposed arrangement was about or even entailed.

Items on the consent agenda are voted on by commissioners without discussion.

The county has been using roads on Hutcheson's property to spray for mosquitoes by truck. Now, Hutcheson wants the county to pay $21,150 or the equivalent of in-kind services if the county wants to continue to use his roads for mosquito control.

The money or in-kind services would be used to help restore the original hydrology on a 960-acre tract Hutcheson owns at the north end of the county.

Hutcheson is required to restore the hydrology as part of a legal settlement with the Satilla and Altamaha riverkeepers and the Glynn Environmental Coalition.

Public works director Becky Rowell said she didn't have an estimate on the cost difference if the county refuses Hutcheson's request and mosquito spraying in the area has to be done by air.

Commissioner Amy Callaway, who represents District 1, which includes Hutcheson's property, said she wasn't aware of the situation and made a motion to table the request until commissioners can get more information. Her motion was approved unanimously.

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