February 20, 2014 10:03:34 AM
TUPELO -- The early design of Tupelo's new police headquarters shows a two-story facility with an $8.8 million price tag.
The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal reports that Mayor Jason Shelton and council President Nettie Davis on Friday will meet privately with other council members to discuss project details.
The full council will discuss the project with Shelton, Tupelo Police Chief Bart Aguirre and other city officials on Tuesday.
Shelton has said he supports issuing bonds for this project and wants to press forward as soon as possible.
"The project has been on the table long enough," Shelton said. "We've got to see what we can afford and move forward with the project."
Plans for the new police facility date to the late 1990s, when the city issued bonds for a new headquarters, but has turned into a serious test of patience for Tupelo's mayors and police chiefs who have followed.
Instead of advancing with the project, city leaders waited years for a federal investigation to end related to a cigarette contraband case.
Tupelo's patience resulted in a contractual agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice providing land and $1.5 million to the city for law enforcement use. The deed changed hands to the city in June.
Currently, the city has about $5.3 million for the new facility.
Funding options include issuing more bonds and using part of the city's $18 million in reserves.
The new building would include secure sally ports to unload prisoners, a lineup room, evidence processing areas, forensic interview rooms with video capability, short-term holding cells and meeting rooms for community events.
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