Opponents of the proposed Walton County Jail location to gather in Monroe Thursday

As opposition grows to the proposed location of a new Walton County Public Safety Complex, that would include a new jail, opponents are planning to meet in downtown Monroe on Thursday to share information and strategize.

The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, July 15, 2021 at 105 Washington Street – the event room behind South on Broad.

Since the purchase was approved at last Tuesday’s Walton County Board of Commissioner’s Meeting, residents have objected to the location. While most agree a new jail is needed, the location is not a popular choice. At 1125 E Church St., it is in the middle of a residential area that has undergone some major revitalization. It is also within walking distance of three schools, a college, several churches and two children’s parks. It is, however, very conveniently located behind the Walton County Government Buildings which houses the courts. It would take transportation of prisoners for court hearings off the roads, a saving in cost and security, according to officials.

According to records, the property is being sold, with a partial donation, by Darrell McWaters of Reliant Homes. Plans are reportedly for three dormitories each holding about 270 inmates with expansion capabilities to eight dormitories. The plans for this new jail have reportedly been in the works for 10 years. While the jail has been a sore point in the community for several years, it was not widely known that this was the main location under consideration.

A petition against the proposal has been circulating in recent days with more than 700 signatures so far.

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