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It’s out with the old and in with the new. The Madison County jail expansion is finally complete after nine months with new equipment and prison pods.

The expansion was proposed by Madison County officials after overcrowding and maintenance issues. The expansion includes thirty-two new inmate beds, two new recreation yards and eight new four-person pods. Unlike the older pods in the jail, there are no cracks in the walls for inmates to hide contraband.

A new computerized system now monitors the entire prison. The system is more secure than the previous system to ensure less mistakes. This is extremely important to ensure doors aren’t open accidentally.

“With the new system in there, you hit a button, especially an exterior door, it’s gonna ask you again if you want to open this door and makes sure that’s the door you want open,” said Sheriff Kip Thomas.

The project cost 2.36 million dollars. The money came from a 2008 SPLOST fund for the jail addition. The project ended being a little over $90,000 under budget.

The completion of the jail expansion was celebrated with a ribbon-cutting ceremony this morning.

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