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Greene County Jail decisions loom

Mar 06, 2018 7:00 am

Daniel Zuckerman is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media if the Greene County Legislature chooses to build a new county jail in Coxsackie, property taxes could jump by 8 percent, according to Greene County Administrator Shaun Gordon. The project bond, which originally totaled $44 million, has risen to $51.4 million due to increasing interest rates. “The commodities — wood, lumber and steel — have raised their prices,” Public Safety Committee Chairman William Lawrence said. The legislature has until March 23 to submit a letter of commitment to the USDA for the $51.4 million. Groden said the letter is not binding -- if the county chooses to pursue a shared jail project, the legislature will not be subject to the resolution to borrow from the USDA. The Public Safety Committee is expected to vote March 7, on a resolution to authorize a $60,000 feasibility study to explore the joint Columbia-Greene jail idea. In anticipation of that vote, the state Law Enforcement Officers Union Council 82 submitted a letter to the legislature last week urging lawmakers to pursue the plan to build a new, Greene County only facility at the Coxsackie site. The judges in Coxsackie have also shown support for a new jail in Greene County as well, Legislator Charles Martinez said. Martinez, an opponent of a shared jail, said, labor costs and interest rates will continue to rise if nothing is done on the project. “There’s a few of us who are not going to vote for any kind of funds to go to Columbia County for a study,” he said. “I’ve got nothing against Columbia County, but we need our own facility here.” The Greene County Legislature Public Safety Committee will meet 6 p.m., Wed., Mar. 7 at the Greene County Office Building, 411 Main Street, Catskill. (Enter at the rear of the building.) Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.

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