New jails to be built in Brockville, Kemptville

Local MPP Steve Clark shares details about new jail builds in Brockville and Kemptville during a news conference on Thursday, Aug. 27, 2020. (Premier of Ontario/YouTube via Newswatch Group)

BROCKVILLE – The Ontario government will be building new jails in Brockville, Kemptville and making upgrades to three other locations in Eastern Ontario.

Premier Doug Ford, Solicitor General Sylvia Jones, the mayors of Brockville, North Grenville and Elizabethtown-Kitley, and MPP Steve Clark were in Brockville Thursday afternoon to make the announcement.

The St. Lawrence Valley Correctional and Treatment Center will see a new unit dedicated for female inmates, Jones announced.

As well, the oldest jail in the province, the circa-1842 Brockville Jail, will be replaced with a new correctional complex on the St. Lawrence Valley grounds, she explained.

“A good news announcement it is. The City of Brockville certainly takes pride in the fact that we are the host of the oldest jail in Ontario. But we will also take pride in having one of the newest jails in Ontario,” Mayor Jason Baker said.

Baker also acknowledged North Grenville Mayor Nancy Peckford and the new facility in her municipality, saying both communities will benefit from additional jobs which would likely see employees commute between the two areas.

The news conference took place at St. Lawrence Valley Correctional and Treatment Center and Elizabethtown-Kitley Mayor Brant Burrow took the opportunity to joke in welcoming dignitaries to his municipality. “The previous mayor welcomed you to Brockville but I hate to point out that we’re on this side of the street and this is Elizabethtown-Kitley so welcome everybody to the Township of Elizabethtown-Kitley,” Burrow said to laughs.

Burrow says it’s a good news story on many levels because it will provide services, but it will also provide “good, quality jobs for a very wide region.” The province plans to add 500 correctional staff across Ontario under its plan.

In Kemptville, a Greater Ottawa Correctional Complex will be built on an existing government-owned site in Kemptville. The Ottawa-Carleton Detention Center will also be renovated.

It’s part of the government’s $500 million being spent over the next five years to modernize jails.

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