Commissioners' purchase land at potential jail site, "Keep Jail Downtown" starts petition

The future site for what could be the new Lucas County Jail (WNWO).

Lucas County Commissioners moving forward with a new site for the Lucas County Jail isn't stopping one organization from fighting back.

"They haven't answered our questions about that land. We don't know if the EPA has approved it," said Joyce Slusher, Member of "Keep Jail Downtown Toledo."

On Tuesday, commissioners agreed to spend just over $800,000 to purchase seven pieces of land, where they would like to put the new jail.

"We have studied. We have looked. We have been disappointed. We have been excited, but we know this is the right thing to do," declared Sheriff John Tharp.

The biggest critics to the new jail site, near the intersection of Alexis and Detroit, has been a group called "Keep the Jail Downtown Toledo."

They presented a petition to the public Tuesday evening in response to the commissioners' decision.

"This is a petition that we feel is the next step, based on the lack of dialogue we've had with the commissioners," said Member Rob Disbrow.

While this group continues to fight back against the county, commissioners believe it is a done deal.

"Now that the sight has been determined, to work with the neighborhood to bring some closure to this, to find out how we can enhance the neighborhood's relationship to it. We're more than willing to sit down and talk about benefits that we can bring to the table," stated Commissioner Pete Gerken.

Regardless, "No New Jail Downtown Toledo" plans on continuing their fight.

"If we are successful in keeping it out of here, then it's going to go to another neighborhood. That's our task, to get the people to understand. 'if we're successful here, it may come to your neighborhood next," said Disbrow.

The new jail is projected to cost $180 million, and voters will see a levy to help fund it on the ballot in November.

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