County commissioners hear update on jail project

Courtesy photo An artist’s rendering of the entrance to the new Delta County Correctional Facility, which will be located at the Delta County Service Center, is shown.

ESCANABA — Delta County Commisioners were presented with an update on the creation of a new correctional facility at the Delta County Service Center by Joseph Mrak, president of Noblesville, Indiana-based security consulting firm Securitecture, during the board’s regular meeting Tuesday.

“What I wanted to do this evening is just give you a brief overview of where we’re at in the process and what the current design of the facility looks like,” Mrak said.

Securitecture is serving as the architect on the Delta County Correctional Facility project, and Mrak began the presentation with a look at the bidding process for construction work on the project. The county received bids for “Bid Package #1” — which includes site work, underground utilities, footing and foundations, structural steel, pre-cast concrete panels, detention equipment, and security electronics — Tuesday.

“It’s a fairly significant package,” Mrak said.

Bid Package #2, which includes all other construction work on the project, will go out for bids in the near future. The correctional facility’s design is expected to be completed by the end of August, and these plans will be released for bidding after Labor Day.

“Things are progressing very well,” Mrak said.

Later, Mrak gave commissioners a more detailed update on the status of the project’s design. This section of the presentation included site plans for the project, 2D and 3D renderings of the new correctional facility’s floor plans, and 3D renderings of the facility’s exterior.

Mrak said he has enjoyed working with Delta County’s government on this project.

“I’ve never seen a group of people work so hard as far as getting answers and getting feedback and so forth,” he said.

According to Delta County Administrator Ryan Bergman, the county is on course to break ground for the new correctional facility in late August.

In other business, the board:

– voted to end the county’s work van program for inmates. This decision was made in response to difficulties finding qualified inmates and a few incidents in which narcotics had been smuggled into the Delta County Correctional Facility.

– voted to formally accept the DNR Trust Fund Grant for the county’s purchase of 1,400 acres of land in Cornell Township from forest products company Weyerhaeuser. This land will be used as a community forest.

– officially renewed Michigan Works!’ lease at the Delta County Service Center.

– authorized Delta County Airport Manager Kelly Smith’s recommendation that Negaunee’s Leutz Sign Company be awarded a signage construction project for businesses at Delta Landing, the industrial park at the Delta County Airport. They also authorized a notice to proceed for projects the airport plans to implement with their federal funding.

– supported the U.P. Area Agency on Aging’s 2018 Annual Implementation Plan and UPCAP’s FY2018 Grant Application for Contracted Plans and Services for the West-Central U.P. Regional Community Corrections Program.

– approved the construction of a search and rescue garage and a change to their offer for land adjacent to Fuller Park, as recommended by the Building and Grounds Committee.

– authorized the retirement companies that offer plans to county employees to offer Roth provisions.

– issued a request for proposal for a new digital copier at the Delta County Courthouse.

– heard from Bay College Executive Director of TRIO Jill Wiese-Martin about the important role that broadband internet plays in rural areas.