HUTCHINSON, Kansas – A couple of judges spoke out at the county commission meeting in Reno County Tuesday, where they discussed creating a secure entrance for the courthouse.
“Your mission is to provide a courthouse that is appropriate for people to come to court,” said Judge Joseph McCarville.
He says safety should never be a concern for people coming in to the Reno County courthouse.
“If they are afraid that something is going to happen to them at the courthouse. they’re not going to come,” McCarville said.
Both judge McCarville and Kansas senior judge, William Lyle, pleaded their cases to county leaders, questioning whether the cost had to be so high.
“They just made a little thing that you walk through and they’ve got a couple of people manning it. That’s not a $1.4 million project,” Lyle said.
Originally the county thought it would spend around one million, but commissioners say the price has jumped to $1.4 million. After adding in additional architectural costs, the total project could come in around $1.7 million.
“Our dilemma is, do you move forward with that assuming acknowledging the fact that we have higher cost associated with the project?” said Reno County commissioner, James Schlickau.
The commission put off making a decision, saying they need more time to consider the specific costs. It’s something Sheriff Randy Henderson says he wants to be apart of. He plans to tape off the area of where the security entrance will be, showing the height and weight to commissioners. He hopes that will shed light to what it will look like in the future.
“The vote that they did a couple of years ago was securing the courthouse. I think we are very derelict in our duties if we do not secure the courthouse,” Henderson said.
Commissioners say, they’ll continue to the discussion at next week’s meeting, where judges are expected to attend again.