New facility for Placerville unlikely
Focus will remain on construction of a juvenile hall at South Lake Tahoe because plans to build a juvenile hall at Placerville are not likely to move forward.
Other juvenile hall projects requesting grant money from the California Board of Corrections were deemed more needy than the 40-bed hall proposed at Placerville. The project was slated to cost $5.85 million, $4 million of which needs to come from the CBC. A final vote is expected by the agency’s board of directors May 16.
“I’m always hopeful,” said Joe Warchol, chief at the El Dorado County Department of Probation. “We’re focusing all our energy and resources to the juvenile hall in South Lake Tahoe. I know it will provide a great deal of relief to kids and conditions at the old facility in Placerville.”
Right now, a juvenile hall in Placerville serves all of El Dorado County. It consistently exceeds its 40-bed limit. About 30 percent of the children housed in the facility are South Shore residents, said Gregory Sly, deputy chief at the probation department.
On Wednesday, the El Dorado grand jury released a report calling for increased fire safety measures at the juvenile hall in Placerville. The report recommended more smoke detectors, a sprinkler system and the posting of emergency breathing devices.
Warchol said he will heed some of the recommendations of the grand jury but not all. He said the juvenile hall will get six new smoke detectors.
“I understand their concerns but the building meets the fire and safety code of the Board of Corrections, local fire marshall and state fire marshall,” he said. “We will put in additional smoke detectors, but putting in a sprinkler system is not warranted and would be cost prohibitive.”
— Gregory Crofton can be reached at (530) 542-8045 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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