The Scott County Board of Supervisors met Tuesday evening to discuss plans for the future $50 million juvenile detention center proposed to be constructed in Scott County.
The Iowa Supreme Court recently announced the creation of a new task force designed specifically to address the state’s approach to juvenile justice. Scott County Supervisor Ken Croken opposes the new center, saying rehabilitation and reformation of the justice system should come before expanding detention facilities.
“It’s ill-advised to build a juvenile detention center three times the size of our current center with a full knowledge and expectation that changes to our system are going to result in a reduction in the need for incarceration.” Croken said.
John Maxwell, one supervisor in support of the new facility, believes a new, larger facility like the 40-bed one proposed, would benefit the community.
“If someone out there gets their car stolen or someone has something happen to them by a juvenile, they want the police or the sheriff’s office to come and help them and having this facility will be the best help,” Maxwell said.
Croken motioned for the board to delay further action in the plan for the new facility and to allow community input in the final decision. Six residents spoke out during the public comment portion of the meeting, all agreeing with Croken’s stance.
“It is only reasonable and fair that there be a voter referendum on an investment of that magnitude,” Croken said.