Wicomico Sheriff's Office to be Replaced - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Wicomico Sheriff's Office to be Replaced

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Wicomico County Sheriff's Office (Photo: WBOC) Wicomico County Sheriff's Office (Photo: WBOC)

SALISBURY, Md.- Wicomico County Sheriff Mike Lewis said a new facility is something he has been pushing for for years and the latest Wicomico County Capital Improvement Plan reveals he will get his wish.

Lewis told WBOC on Tuesday that the 25-year-old facility on Naylor Mill Road in Salisbury is showing some glaring signs of wear and tear.  Lewis said the steel structure was built on a concrete slab in a low-lying area which means there have been too many occasions where water has been a real problem.

"A lot of moisture.  We've had a sick building syndrome here for years.  We've had HVAC in here to clean out all of the duct work in this building," Lewis said.

According to the sheriff, there have been plenty of storms where staff throughout the building were forced to cover the desks and computers with plastic to avoid them suffering water damage.  The CIP sites a number of structural and building mechanical issues that were behind the decision to replace the facility. But along with the problems, there are a handful of law enforcement needs that could use an upgrade as well that will be taken care of in a new building. Leweis said the current building does not have a proper facility to fingerprint people and the holding cells could use some improvements.

"They're adequate for what we have right now, but they're inadequate for holding juveniles in the same area.  We don't have that.  And there are state laws that have tightly regulated the detention of juveniles over the years," Lewis said.

However, replacing this building is no small project.  In previous years, $25,000 was set aside to do an engineering study to determine the issues with the facility.  In the upcoming FY17 budget, there is $100,000 for a project study and then $600,000 in FY18 for architectural work and engineering of the new sheriff's office.  Then just over $5 million has been set aside in both FY19 and FY20 for the construction of the building.

Lewis said numerous locations are being considered for the new office in the county.  The hope is to have one that's easily accessible and visual.  One location being considered is on Hobbs Road behind Perdue Stadium.  However, no final decisions on a location have yet been made.

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