EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. — Officials say the number of inmates at a southwestern Illinois county jail has dropped in the past several months.

The (Alton) Telegraph reports Madison County Jail’s population at the start of 2018 was 276. The population hit a record in August at 361. The facility is certified for 312 inmates.

The county state’s attorney’s and public defenders’ offices have tried to move cases more quickly to address overpopulation.

The newspaper reports that last year that a total of 6,772 inmates were detained, an increase of 456 from 2016.

The jail’s population faces other challenges, along with security concerns, in the spring, when a $5.4 million renovation project is slated to start. Inmates will have to be moved while work is being done on a cell block by cell block basis.

Information from: The Telegraph, http://www.thetelegraph.com

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