Work continues on Converse County Justice Center
DOUGLAS, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - There’s some construction going on in Converse County, and not just on the roads. The county is adding on to it’s justice building.
The first phase of the Converse County Justice Center was completed around five years ago. It houses the Sheriff’s department, the Douglas police department, joint dispatch, and the jail. Enter... Phase two.
“What we’re building now is phase two,” Converse County Commissioner Jim Willox explains. “Which will be district court and circuit court court... And their staff... The county attorney, and the clerk of district court. So this complex will have all of the judicial tasks, and the jail that is necessary for the county to provide.”
The current county courthouse sits a couple of miles away in downtown Douglas. Commissioner Willox says having everything in one place will provide a couple of benefits. “Getting everything in one place is really a security issue as well as a convenience. Because we were hauling inmates from our jail to our courthouse downtown. For their court appearances. We had some remote appearances. But by getting everything in one facility, it’s more secure for the inmates, and more secure for a staff.”
Willox says the money for the justice center comes from the county’s general funds, but not directly from taxpayer money. “We are the number one oil and gas producer in the state right now. Or if not number one, very close all the time. So that tax revenue from oil and gas is really what built both of these. We did not use optional 6-cent. We saved money over years and been able to build it with that. So it’s really a big thanks to the oil and gas industry, that allowed us to build this for the future.”
Willox also says that, as long as winter weather doesn’t slow them down too much, they’re hoping to have phase two completed in March.
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