In a surprising twist of fate that some have called the old, “bait and switch”, the Stewart County Commissioners and the County Mayor have approved and agreed upon, with the Town of Dover, the almost tripling of the original, mutually agreed upon need of the County; a 50 bed count jail with adjacent Court Facility (that is currently being carved out of Dover’s pristine woods) to an autonomous mini-prison with 128 beds and NO Courts facility.
The new prison, as it will be considered a “prison” because to sustain itself it will have to “ship in” felons from Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville and all points in between, will be nothing more than a white elephant, a frivolous expense, and a tax burden to all Stewart County residents. We will pay, thanks to wise decisions by Stewart County Commissioners, Mayors, and Town of Dover officials for a prison complex to be built and to be the eye sore in the heart of our precious town seat for the next generation or maybe, forever. PNN predicts this barbed wired reflection of our society will soon house illegal aliens. Not the children, the felons.
Its just too bad that the Officials in charge couldn’t have had the initiative and the foresight to clear the land in a more eco-friendly kind of way that would preserve the natural beauty, the good strong trees, and natural Stewart County underbrush located dangerously near the heart of our Town’s traffic. PNN wishes more consideration would have been given by OFFICIALS to the location of the building site and its impact on the Citizens of the Town of Dover and the County who must ALL do their business in Dover and must now fight with the dangers of increased traffic and VERY HIGH INTENSITY work going on 24 hours a day seven days a week 365 days a year.
“Shipped in felons bring in $35 a day from the State of Tennessee to the Municipality that houses these prisoners,” says Stewart County Sheriff Candidate Frankie Gray.
“The problem is, it costs $50 dollars a day to house them. On top of that, when you go from a 50 bed facility to a 128 bed facility you’ve automatically doubled your labor costs, and then some, you’ve increased your water cost, your electric cost. Its just something you have to consider.” he says.
Using math learned in Potneck, PNN figures that 100 prisoners a day @ $50 each will cost roughly $5000 dollars a day to sustain them. The State of Tennessee will provide Dover or Stewart County $3500 dollars a day. PNN needs to understand who will make up this daily $1500 dollar difference? What about water? Electric?
What happened to what the County originally NEEDED? How did this Police State, fine seeking, and prison inmate driven mentality, worm its way into what WE NEEDED as a County?
PNN has no argument with the fact that Stewart Countians from Indian Mound to Leatherwood, from Bumpus Mills to Big Rock, or from Carlisle to Standing Rock will NOT have to process these prisoners through our County Court House as the Town of Dover sees the dollar signs all too well of the growing correctional police state and is more than willing to run these felons through Town of Dover facilities. Speed traps generate money and so do felons. This seems to be the mentality and the vision of the Town of Dover and it’s Alderman. PNN questions if this is in the best interests of the residents of Dover; to actually build a prison complex (instead of a County Jail) in our County Seat. Was there something wrong with the City Park? Was the area adjacent to the County Shop unavailable?
All questions aside, this is a gracious provision from the Town of Dover to the County to use its Town Court’s facilities for our new County Prison. Dover residents must be more than happy to shoulder these increased costs in water, electric, and increasingly militarized police that is needed escorting convicted felons into our Town.
PNN is watchful for when the taxes spill over, for when the County is asked to help out, for when all of the residents of Potneck listed above will see their taxes increased to pay for a mini-prison with a balance sheet to tight to risk the sanctity and beauty of our County seat.
Alas, that die has been cast.
Who hasn’t voted yet in Potneck?