Report Shows Austin County Jail Needs Over $2 Million In Repairs, Renovations, and Improvements [VIDEO] [UPDATED]

***CLARIFICATION***  Judge Tim Lapham called and explained that the expansions on conditions 10 and 11 were either/or and not a combination.  So, if they go with 11 then they won’t do 10 and if they go with 10 then they won’t do 11.  We apologize for any misunderstanding.

While many in the county are still reeling over the increases in the tax burden they are facing, it may only be the start of their pain.  Tuesdays special commissioner’s court meeting was held to give the results of the findings that Burns Architecture, LLC found concerning Austin County’s Jail.  The jail has been the source of much expense for Austin County in the past but, if the presentation is any indication, then the financial costs to the county and its taxpayers is going to be substantial.  The figures on the low end came to around $2,081,200 and on the high end were $2,371,200.  However, these estimates were still not the full account of what the possible costs/expenditures necessary to fix the jail would be as one of the variables was “unknown at this time.”

The presenting firm, Burns Architecture LLC, specializes in local government projects such as courthouses, jails, and other facilities that counties and municipalities may need constructed.  Their website images show a substantial amount of designing experience in the form of photos of past projects they have completed for counties and municipalities. 

Below is the list of items that needed addressing and the costs associated with each issue.  The report (view-able below this list or downloadable HERE) goes into detail on each issue.  The video below is of the entire presentation.

  1. Metal roof over 2011 jail addition – Probable Cost: less than $1000
  2. Metal retrofit roof system over original building flat roof
    1. Option (1): Total Probable Cost: $260,000
    2. Option (2): Total Probable Cost: $231,000
  3. Mold inside the building – Probable Cost: $50,000 – $100,000
  4. High humidity inside the building – Probable Cost: Unknown at this time.
  5. Non-Roof Water Infiltration
    1. Condition 1 – Probable Cost: $16,000
    2. Condition 2 – Probable Cost: less than $200
    3. Condition 3 – Probable Cost: less than $5000
    4. Condition 4 – Probable Cost: less than $1000
  6. Other work needed to extend the lifetime of the facility
    1. Condition 1 – Probable Cost: $10,000 – $20,000
    2. Condition 2 – Probable Cost: $165,000
    3. Condition 3 – Probable Cost: $260,000
    4. Condition 4 – Probable Cost: $10,000
    5. Condition 5 – Probable Cost: less than $5000
    6. Condition 6 – Probable Cost: negligible
    7. Condition 7 – Probable Cost: $100,000
    8. Condition 8 – Probable Cost: $25,000
    9. Condition 9 – Probable Cost: $2000 – $3000
    10. Condition 10 – Probable Cost: $350,000 – $450,000 including equipment and furnishings.
    11. Condition 11 – Probable Cost: $850,000 – $950,000 (in addition to dispatch/communication center cost)

Austin Co – Jail & SO Assessment & Report by Austin County News Online on Scribd

The meeting ended with the next step being to set up a meeting with the Texas Jail Commission to discuss how to move forward.  Below is the meeting and presentation in its entirety.