Napa County’s plan to build a new jail just got closer reality with $20 million more from the state. Gov. Jerry Brown still must approve the money as part of the state budget.
The August 2014 Napa earthquake heavily damaged the existing 264-bed jail at 1125 Third St., forcing authorities to shift some inmates east to Solano County. Officials said the jail also lacks facilities to treat inmates with mental health needs. The new allocation is in addition to $30 million the county has already set aside and about $17 million in other state funds.
The project for the new jail has been in motion since 2004. The jail was part of the Hall of Justice when it was built in 1976 then expanded into an annex finished next door in 1989. The county has been considering demolishing the 52,000-square-foot jail annex to allow for more downtown redevelopment.
In 2014, the county paid $6.6 million for 27 acres just south of Napa State Hospital and next to Syar’s quarry on Highway 221. Versions of the new jail project have included a 366-bed facility, projected to cost $178 million, and a 256-bed jail that would continue to use 55 beds at the downtown jail, at a estimated cost of $103 million.
The larger facility would have required raising $137 million via a quarter-cent sales tax increase. Earlier this month, voters rejected Measure Y, proposing that quarter-cent sales tax hike.
New Napa County jail project
Project options: 256 beds, $103 million; 366 beds, $178 million
Location: 27 acres south of Napa State Hospital on Highway 221