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Santa Barbara County

Santa Barbara County Grand Jury has concerns over jail funding

A Santa Barbara County Grand Jury report published Tuesday highlights budget concerns over the future operations of the proposed North County Jail.

The facility, just outside the Santa Maria city limits, was designed to help with the county's jail-overcrowding problem. Construction is expected to start next year with completion estimated for May of 2018.

The jury's report says there is an "uncomfortably high probability" that funding the jail's future operation could require new revenue sources, a cut in county services, or both—based on the county's budget plan.

The jury says it wants the County Board of Supervisors to maintain focus on the issue, and for the county to graphically display whether it meets projected funding levels.