Curry County jail expansion project could mean less room for inmates

CLOVIS, N.M. (KRQE)- A $10 million project to expand a New Mexico jail isn’t going quite as planned.

The idea was to fit more inmates, not fewer. Now, they could need millions more to get the job done right.

The Curry County Adult Detention Center in Clovis has had its share of problems over the years, but the county says it has been working hard to improve conditions at the jail.

A big part of that plan is a $10 million expansion.

“The initial plan was to build an additional facility that would aid us in properly separating different classifications of inmates,” said Chet Spear, Curry County commissioner.

The jail currently holds 260 inmates. The plan was to add a 48-bed facility.

However, to stay up to certain standards, the county thinks it will have to close down an annex that houses 52 inmates. This means the expansion could cost the jail space for four inmates.

So now county officials are working on a plan to double the expansion to 96 more beds; but that means more money.

Now, the county commission has to figure out where to find millions of dollars to make sure the jail gets an expansion and not just a makeover.

“It will help ease the problem of the overcrowding that we have had in the past, the proper classification of for the inmates that need to be classified and cut down on the potential lawsuits,” said Spear.

One idea to come up with the extra money is to use $4 million set aside for a courthouse renovation.

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