Isabella County ends agreement for new jail property

An Isabella County Sheriff police cruiser sits parked outside the Isabella County Jail at 207 Court St.

Isabella County Commission voted to end its agreement to purchase a Union Township property that would have been the new Isabella County Jail and Sheriff’s Office. 

Since the property lacked proper access to water and sewer connections, the location at the southwest corner of Remus and Summerton Roads is no longer suitable for the project. 

Isabella County Sheriff Michael Main said the agreement was made on the property to ensure its availability if the infrastructure requirements were met. 

“The property we put money down on was pending that all of the infrastructures checked out … In due process, as we went through (the process), it did not qualify and meet the needs for the sheriff’s office,” Main said. “We did that to hold the land while we did the due diligence to make sure all of the things lined up and they didn’t. That’s why we have to withdraw from that property.”

The next step for the project will involve reevaluating and negotiating with other properties. Main says it is “premature” to say which property his division is evaluating.

The process for finding a new property will remain the same. A price for the property will be negotiated, a down payment will be made, the property will go through the appropriate zoning and it will be ensured all necessities for the property are met. 

The original start time for the building was slated for later this spring. Main said he's still optimistic the project will have some progress this summer or fall. 

“We are going to cover all of our bases. We are going to get this right from the gate out," Main said. 'I would rather be 100 times right and make a few backward steps than be wrong once and have a disaster."