Town hall meetings set to discuss proposed jail in Little River County

ASHDOWN, Ark. - Voters in Little River County, Arkansas will soon vote on whether to pay a new sales tax to build and operate a new jail.

Several town hall meetings are set this month to discuss the proposed sales tax increase.

The current jail facility does not meet state standards and could close by the end of the year.

County officials say the jail doesn't have a kitchen, laundry facility, medical room or segregation rooms.

The election calls for a proposed three-eighth cent sales tax increase which would pay for the cost of construction.

It also calls for a quarter cent tax to be used for maintenance and operations.

County officials must submit a reasonable solution to the state on Dec. 31.

"None of us wants to ask for a tax increase. We pay taxes like everyone else, but the thing is, when we have to have something like this, the only option was to ask for an increase," said Judge Mike Cranford, Little River County, Arkansas.

The total cost of the new jail is about $8 million.

If the measure passes, Judge Cranford say the new jail would be built in the next couple of years.

Here's a schedule of the town hall meetings:

Aug. 8, Foreman Community Center

Aug. 13, Ogden Community Center

Aug. 15, Winthrop Methodist Fellowship Hall.

All presentations will start at 6:30 p.m.

The special election will be held on Sept. 10.

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