By David Howell
WATER VALLEY – The six-week project to convert a building constructed to house state inmates into the county’s new sheriff’s office was completed this week and Sheriff Lance Humphreys reported his department is expected to move in later in the month. The building is located adjacent to the new county jail on Hwy. 32, across from BorgWarner.
Originally constructed to house 20 state inmates as a minimum security facility, the 2,500 square foot building has not been used since last year when construction was completed after the Mississippi Department of Corrections Commissioner Marshall Fisher nixed the inmate work program utilized by many counties across the state.
Humphreys, who ramrodded the project, explained that the building had concrete floors and bunk rooms that were partially open for the inmates.
The walls were gutted and the space converted to seven offices for the sheriff and his deputies. Humphreys said the project also included duct work for the HVAC system, a kitchen area, LED lighting, painting and flooring, along with a lobby to greet visitors and an evidence room. He also said Eddie Peacock was the contractor on the job, while several local subcontractors also worked on the building. Humphreys said inmate labor was used for painting, sheetrock, flooring and other work on the building. The total cost for the conversion is expected to be just under $50,000.
“We are waiting on the installation of fiber optic cables and phone lines to be completed and we will move in,” the sheriff said. The department’s non-emergency phone number will remain the same, (662) 473-2722.