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Yavapai County Approves New Justice Center in Prescott

The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors this week unanimously approved a property tax increase to pay for a new jail and justice center in Prescott.

Yavapai County homeowners will pay an additional $30 for each $100,000 dollars of “assessed limited value” on their properties starting in September.  The move comes after Yavapai County voters twice rejected a proposed sales tax increase to generate funds to build a new jail and upgrade courtrooms.

Yavapai County Board Public Information Officer David McAtee estimated the tax hike will provide up to $8-million dollars for the new justice center that will reduce overcrowding at the jail in Camp Verde.

"It only really has room for about 550 inmates. Well, we’ve been averaging about 570 to 600 everyday which means you’ve got to put them somewhere and where they end up is sleeping on the floor” McAtee said.

Yavapai County supervisors have selected a firm to create a design for the new facility that will be located near the existing juvenile detention center in Prescott.

A portion of the revenues will be used to pay down Yavapai County’s $50-million debt that’s provided pensions to retired county law enforcement staff.

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