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Keweenaw County Approves Repairs, and Moves Ahead with Elevator Project

Keweenaw County’s courthouse and Sheriff’s office will need some repairs. The most urgent at the courthouse involves an electric panel. The court house experienced some flooding through a basement electric panel as a result of the rapid snow melt last week. The county plans to contract work with Keweenaw Power and Lite. The company previously worked on a similar project at the courthouse three years ago. The work is estimated to cost about 3,400 dollars.

The commission also approved work at the courthouse that will replace an upstairs window by Keweenaw Glass and Door. Keweenaw Glass will also replace a broken window in the attic of the sheriff office. As well as the sheriff’s office second floor windows. The Keweenaw Glass and Door estimate for all of the window projects is about  7,500 dollars.

Board members also approved hardwood floor refinishing for the first floor of the courthouse and in the fingerprinting area of the sheriff’s office. Keweenaw County will work with JW Hardwood Flooring to redo the protective coating on the hardwood to keep the flooring in good condition. The estimate for the flooring in both building will cost about 10,000 dollars.

All of the approved repairs for the courthouse and Sheriff’s office will come from the courthouse improvement fund.

Additionally the commission approved OHM to move forward in the design process to install a much need elevator in the county courthouse. The Keweenaw County courtroom resides on the second floor and makes it very difficult for those who are older or have a physical handicap to attend court proceedings. OHM has found that there is a single company in the region of Northern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula that install elevators, and their wait list will take at least a year to get through, right now.

The elevator will cost Keweenaw County approximately half a million dollars, regardless of the type of elevator the county will install. A traction lift elevator will cost about 600,000 dollars. While a hydraulic lift elevator will cost about 500,000 dollars. OHM has not yet determined the proper type of elevator as the space within the courthouse is very limited. OHM also noted that the design is complicated by limited space in the court house and will need to run phase three power from the nearby electrical terminal. The county moved forward with the plan to lock in pricing on some of the project, though the completed project will likely take at least one year.

Keweenaw County will also look to apply for a MCOLES grant with the state to attain a new officer. The sheriff department is down one deputy with the retirement of Sergeant Aho.

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