Macoupin County Old Jail Renovation Project continues to progress

Macoupin County Old Jail Renovation Project continues to

By: JACKSON WILSON

Enquirer Democrat News Reporter

At the Mar. 12 Macoupin County Board meeting, it was made known that blueprints of the county’s Old Jail Renovation Project  are starting to come together. Approximately $29,000 has been raised through donations. Most of the work has already been done and the architecture team has been reaching out to members of the local community for additional support. The board hopes to have the facility open to visitors by no later than early summer. The time frame of the project stands around 30 days in terms of completing all of the work.  The ultimate goal is to have this feat accomplished by tourism season and give the people passing through the county a legitimate reason to visit.

A major resolution has been put out for supplemental appropriation for circuit court funds. Support will be needed because the court’s annual budget has been nearly wiped out in the first six months of the fiscal year. The board has been fortunate to contain the costs of indigent legal fees for a long time, but those days are now concluded. Free legal services have been weighing down the budget due to higher county expenses, so the board agreed to supplement the loss by via of a $115,000 surplus. With the assistance of Judge Meyer, three attorneys have been identified to pay a fixed monthly fee to handle this case load. Workloads will be decreased if the plan goes accordingly. Without this in effect, a fear has arisen that the monthly court’s appointed attorney fees will be greatly increased.

The board unanimously agreed to reappoint six individuals to county community services – John Earley, Jeff Sudduth, Chris Eades, Jess McKee, Wilbert Scheller and Harold Gregory. Earley will be a part of the Girard Fire Protection District until April 30, 2022. Sudduth, Eades and McKee will be Emergency 911 Board members until February 22, 2022. Scheller is bound for the Mt. Olive Protection District for a three year term ending April 30, 2022. Gregory has been reassigned to the Carlinville Fire Protection District, effective until May 1 of the same year.

Speed limit ordinances have been unanimously approved for Girard’s Emmerson Airline Road and Hagaman Road in Hagaman. Enterprise zone abatement of property taxes will be put into effect for the Veterans Assistance Commission and the University of Illinois Extension Office. An amendment has been approved for the Public Health Department Bond Ordinance as well as an application of Section 5311 regarding rural downstate operating assistance for public transportation.

The board heard from the county auditor and received the audit from the last fiscal year, which showed a clean and unmodified report.

The next board meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, April 10.