County will move ahead with second phase of CIP

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Commissioners want to devise best plan for 6W, sheriff’s office renovations

Work will start immediately on developing the second phase of the five-year Swift County Capital Improvement Plan (CIP), which is focused on renovation or new construction of facilities used by the sheriff’s office, 6W Community Corrections, county attorney’s office, and highway department.

It will also seek up to a two-year lease on the office space it is temporarily using for 6W Community Corrections.

The county’s building committee and staff will begin discussions on how to proceed with phase two as phase one work is just getting underway on the courthouse and Countryside Public Health’s building.

This second phase is expected to cost over $5.4 million with work to take place between 2018 and 2020.

In July, the county board approved a $5.105 million general obligation capital improvement plan bond sale to pay for renovations to the courthouse and Countryside Public Health building. Work is already taking place at both buildings and is expected to be completed in January.

However, at its July 18 meeting commissioners declined to approve a $96,000 bid by Sussner Construction for renovating 6W Community Corrections’ office space in the basement of the Law Enforcement Center (LEC.)  It provides probation and parole supervision services for Swift, Chippewa, Yellow Medicine and Lac qui Parle counties.

It wasn’t denied because the work isn’t needed, but rather because the county board is working toward a more comprehensive look at how the space needs of the sheriff’s office and 6W can best be addressed.

6W’s space in the basement of the LEC is cramped with concerns about the safety and security of the staff. The sheriff’s office needs more office space for deputies, an evidence room, and an interview room.

Currently, 6W Community Corrections pays the county $2,400 for its annual lease. But with the renovation going on at the courthouse and the 8th Judicial District Court taking over the basement of the LEC, 6W has moved to space owned by Dr. Todd Trudel adjacent to his Benson Family Eye practice. 6W is leasing that space for  $9,600 a year or $800 a month.  

Before he left last year, former Administrator Mike Pogge-Weaver had studied the 6W space finding that addressing safety and liability concerns was a high priority, 6W Director Midge Christianson told commissioners....


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