SUPERIOR – The Mineral County jail is not currently housing any inmates. On Friday, the Mineral County Commissioners discussed permanently closing the jail.
Commissioner Roman Zylawy said he’d like to see the jail reopen, if possible.
“It’s very inconvenient to not have a jail, not only for the officers but for the county attorney, for the judge, district judges appearances,” Zylawy said. “So I’d really like to see something come to fruition where we can have this open soon for the convenience of everybody, and also for Mineral County’s sake.”
The jail, located in Superior, holds 24 beds that have been empty since January due to lack of detention officers.
This is the second time the jail has closed since 2017, due to employee resignations that cited low pay and poor morale. The jail would need at least five detention officers, and right now they only have two applicants.
At Friday’s meeting, Mineral County commissioners decided to give the county attorney and sheriff more time to figure out how to reopen.
Possibilities to reopen include contracting out beds with other counties and potential bond options.
Mineral County Attorney Ellen Donahue said she contacted Lake County Sheriff Don Bell regarding housing Lake County inmates in their facility.
“I think at this point we’d be willing to have any idea thrown out,” Donahue said.
Currently, an estimated five inmates from Mineral County are incarcerated in other county jails.
Sheriff Mike Boone said it’s an inconvenience for his deputies to transport inmates to other counties, some three hours away.
“I step in and do it as well, so it is an inconvenience, obviously,” Boone said.
The next commissioners meeting is in two weeks, where they will reconvene with more information.