Lewis & Clark County jail renovation work temporarily delayed

Posted at 11:22 PM, Oct 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-02 01:22:14-04

HELENA — Lewis and Clark County leaders say work on the ongoing renovation project at the county detention center is temporarily delayed, due to the confirmed COVID-19 cases in the facility.

Sheriff Leo Dutton confirmed Thursday that the contractor working at the jail is currently testing its employees. They plan to resume work once the tests are complete.

“We hope to get them back soon,” Dutton said.

Four inmates and seven staff members at the detention center have tested positive for COVID-19 since last week.

Construction crews are currently remodeling all three floors of the Law Enforcement Center in Helena, turning it into an expanded detention center. The $8 million project is aimed at reducing overcrowding in the jail.

Dutton said the contractors have now started work on the top floor, where inmates are currently held. That means crews are in closer proximity to jail staff than they were earlier in the project.