Mental health facility a part of MAPS 4 conversation

OKLAHOMA CITY - MAPS 4 for mental health.

An Oklahoma County Commissioner wants to use some of those tax dollars to help inmates at the Oklahoma County jail.

But, a new mental health facility means, more money is needed, and that's why the county commissioners want to partner with the city.

“We want that jail to operate at a better level than perhaps it has,” said

Mayor David Holt says he's aware of the problem, inmates struggling with mental health and addiction not getting the help they need in the Oklahoma County Jail and, a new proposal that the city may be able to help.

“We`re cognizant of our role in that jail and we want it to succeed and we want our citizens who are involved in the criminal justice process to be treated humanely,” said Mayor Holt.

As a part of MAPS 4, tax dollars to go towards building a new mental health facility.

Mayor Holt says it's still early to say if this will happen.

“I think it's a reasonable conversation to have and we will kind of just see how that evolves in the months ahead and we will see if that`s a need we can meet with MAPS4,” said Mayor Holt.

Oklahoma County commissioner Brian Maughn came up with the idea.

“The real issue is the mental illness and they`re of course not getting treated that way when they're just slammed in there with a regular criminal,” said Maughn.

Five council members have to vote on what will be a part of MAPS 4 before anything could move forward, but after that, this decision isn't in their hands.

“The true ultimate decision lies within the people of Oklahoma city in a public vote, city wide,” said Mayor Holt.

Mayor Holt hopes voters demand their voices are heard about what they want.

“Advocate to your council members and advocate to the public and you just try to create a political critical mass for that particular project,” said Mayor Holt.

This idea could be proposed to the City Council in the fall.

From there, residents will vote on it at the end of this year.

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