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Lincoln County votes down bond issue to build new jail

Published: Nov. 4, 2020 at 9:29 AM CST
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LINCOLN COUNTY, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - According to the South Dakota Secretary of State’s website, the bond issue failed with 67% of voters deciding against it. More than 20,000 people voted against it while a little over 10,000 people voted for the bond issue.

Proponents of the bond said it would be used for the construction of a new jail for Lincoln County and renovations to the existing county courthouse. The bond would not be able to exceed $50 million and would have to be paid back within 30 years, raising property taxes for residents in Lincoln County.

One of the Lincoln County Commissioners, Joel Arends, didn’t think the bond would pass because more public input was needed on it. He said voters were telling him from the beginning they didn’t want the jail because they didn’t think it was necessary. They didn’t want property taxes to be increased as well.

Arends said the new jail isn’t necessary right now. Instead, he wants to talk to Sheriff Mike Milstead with the Minnehaha County Sheriff’s Office and local legislators to work out a long-term deal with Minnehaha County and housing inmates there.

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