Plan to Build New Regional Jail Postponed

From the PI.Com:

Seattle and its suburbs in north and east King County will likely postpone plans to build a new regional jail after County Executive Dow Constantine announced Thursday that the county’s downtown jail would have room for the cities’ misdemeanor inmates through 2020.

Seattle and partner cities were studying where to build a 640-bed, $110 million regional jail. Cities in South King County launched their own effort and are building a new jail in Des Moines.

Previous studies showed the downtown jail running out of room for misdemeanor offenders because of a growing felony population. That would leave the cities with few options on where to take offenders such drunken drivers, misdemeanor domestic abuser and those convicted of minor drug cases. King County was originally slated to terminate its jail contracts with cities by 2012, but recently extended contracts with cities through 2016.

Over the last few years, the jail population instead declined.