A planned maximum-security addition to the West Contra Costa jail is on hold after it failed to make the grade on a list of projects endorsed by a state agency Thursday.

In October, the county applied for an $80 million slice of a $500 million Criminal Justice Facilities Construction fund. The county intended to use the money to build a 240-cell (480-bed), stand-alone wing with program space, visitation and interview rooms and additional space for medical, dental, mental and other health services next to the existing, minimum-security county jail in Richmond.

The Board of State and Community Corrections rated Contra Costa's application eighth out of 10 in the large county category. On Thursday, the board endorsed the full grant requests of the top three -- San Mateo, Fresno and Orange counties -- and a partial award to fourth-place Sacramento County.

The fundamental purpose of the grants is adherence to the state prison-reform mandate, often referred to as "realignment," to house and rehabilitate nonviolent offenders in their home communities as a way of improving their prospects of rehabilitation and successful transition back into society.

Contra Costa Undersheriff Mike Casten said Gov. Jerry Brown included $500 million in a second round of funding in his proposed budget released last week, and the county plans to try again.

"This first round of (funding) was a very competitive process," Casten said in an email. "Although we did not receive funding this time, we are focused on providing additional opportunities at our West County Detention Facility for inmates to participate in evidence based programs that start in custody and are completed out of custody. Our goal is to facilitate a smooth and successful transition into the community after incarceration."

Counties were ranked based on their ability to fulfill four preference categories, which included commitment of some matching funds; a financing strategy; completion of real estate-related procedures; and California Environmental Quality Act compliance. Contra Costa did not fulfill any of the four criteria, according to the state board's evaluation results. San Francisco and Sonoma also failed to make the cut.

In October, Contra Costa County Sheriff David Livingston had said that of the total estimated $88.9 million project cost for the West County facility, the county would have to pitch in $9 million, including $2.9 million in state dollars earmarked for the costs of supervising felons that previously went to state prisons, with the rest coming out of his department's budget. Livingston could not be reached for comment Thursday.

Of the 36 counties that applied for funding, 12 were awarded their requests in full, including San Mateo and Solano counties, while three, including San Joaquin County, were granted partial funding.

San Mateo County will receive $24.4 million to renovate the Maguire Correctional Facility with 46 special-use beds, a mental health treatment center, mental health wellness pod, recreation yard, vocational training space and seismic upgrades, according to its application.

No funds will be disbursed until after the 30-day window to appeal Thursday's decision, board members said.

Members of several organizations advocating alternatives to incarceration urged the state board not to fund any jail construction and instead to fund community-based education and job training and referral programs.

One member of Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB) chastised the board, accusing it of financing a "jail boom" at a time when the prison population is supposed to decline.

"The U.S. Supreme Court has ordered (Gov.) Jerry Brown to reduce the number of people in its cages," she said, adding that investors are "chomping at the bit" to buy revenue bonds that will finance the jail construction.

Contact Tom Lochner at 510-262-2760. Follow him at Twitter.com/tomlochner.