Public Hearing Held To Discuss Home Rule Charter For Joint Jail - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Public Hearing Held To Discuss Home Rule Charter For Joint Jail

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Three months ago the Morton County Commission voted in favor of a joint jail with Burleigh County, but now it's time to figure out how to pay for it.

Tonight a public hearing is held to hear what the people of Burleigh County think about a half percent sales tax to pay for the new joint jail.

The sales tax increase would go into effect October 1, 2014 and would expire once the facility is paid for.

"There are other ways to pay for it, that's true however they all involve property tax and so instead of levying a property tax just on the residents of Burleigh county, a sales tax could be applied to a more broader scope," Larry Klemin said.

Others say they're against the sales tax increase.

In fact Burleigh County Commissioner Mark Armstrong showed up for the public hearing and says Burleigh County has an incarceration problem.

He says Burleigh County has more people in jail than any other county in North Dakota.

"We keep people in jail instead of putting them on supervised probation this tears apart families, creates the need for more detention space and sadly ultimately it makes criminals out of people that might otherwise get rehabilitation on the outside, in fact rehabilitation is not happening in our community," Burleigh County Commissioner Mark Armstrong said.

If the Burleigh County Commission passes the sales tax increase, it will be put on the ballot for the June 2014 primary election.

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