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Pueblo residents seem split on jail funding ballot question

Pueblo residents seem split on jail...

PUEBLO, Colo. - It's no secret the Pueblo County Jail is in bad condition.

The walls are crumbling and pipes are leaking. But that just scratches the surface. On top of it all, it's overcrowded at more than 150 percent capacity.

 

"There could not be any more urgency on behalf of, I think, county officials but also the community," said Pueblo County Commissioner Garrison Ortiz.

Ballot question 1A asks Pueblo County voters for a sales tax increase that amounts to less than a penny in order to pay for a new jail and turn the current building into a drug treatment facility.

But Ortiz said he knows it's going to be a tough sell with the voters.

We spoke with pueblo residents who seemed to be split on the issue.

"I definitely support the new jail being built so that way we could get these, more criminals off the streets," said Pueblo resident Kristina Martinez.

"I've been against the new jail. I don't think we need one. I think they have adequate resources right now," said Pueblo resident Pablo Mora.


Ortiz said if the ballot question doesn't pass, the Pueblo taxpayers will end up paying for this jail in one way or another.

"Any other short-term measure is going to take a considerable amount of tax paying dollars and ultimately you will have to build a new detention facility. Working with what we have is only going to go so far," Ortiz said.

The county posed a similar question in 2015. This time, it is asking for less tax money.


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