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Monday, May 2, 2016

County to consider property

Friday, October 21, 2011

McCOOK, Nebraska -- The Red Willow County, Nebraska, board of commissioners plans a closed session Monday morning to discuss the possible purchase of two apartment houses north of the courthouse on Norris Avenue in McCook.

The meeting begins at 9 a.m., in the commissioners' room on the third floor of the courthouse. The closed session is scheduled at 9:30 a.m., and involves the possible purchase of two apartment buildings at 520 Norris from owners Greg and Janet Hepp of McCook.

If the purchase goes through, the county will own all the lots north of the courthouse on the Norris Avenue side of the block, the preferred location for the jail that commissioners are studying. The proposal includes a 24-bed jail -- not attached to the courthouse -- and a parking lot.

At 9:45 a.m., commissioners Earl McNutt, Steve Downer and Vesta Dack will consider a request from City of McCook attorney Nate Schneider to bring the jail location possibility to McCook's planning commission and city council.

McNutt said at the jail committee meeting Sept. 21 and at a commissioners' meeting Sept. 27 that legally, the county would not have to request or have permission from the city's planning committee to build a jail in what is currently a residential area. "But, out of respect, yes, we'll go to the planning committee," McNutt said. "We have no intention of hiding anything from anyone."

The commissioners' agenda includes time for citizens' comments (no action can be taken) at 9 a.m.; and a board of equalization meeting with treasurer Marleen Garcia at 9:15 a.m.

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What law or legal reference would permit the county to not follow the city regulations?

-- Posted by dennis on Fri, Oct 21, 2011, at 2:57 PM

Agreed, what makes the County not abide to City building codes? Also, "what if" the county decides not to build on those sites? That's going to be one heck of an expensive parking lot.

-- Posted by Rural Citizen on Fri, Oct 21, 2011, at 3:05 PM

Rural, also what if the planning commission says no. Then we have the city and county at odds. If the county can build a jail on that site without the approval of the city, they should do it.

-- Posted by dennis on Fri, Oct 21, 2011, at 3:27 PM

If the county plans to FINALLY build a jail, I hope there is not an on-going grudge match between the county and the city. There are several things to take into consideration as far as the location north of the courthouse. But if everything works out, let them build it. Then both entities will each have their own much-needed new buildings.

-- Posted by bntheredunthat on Fri, Oct 21, 2011, at 3:54 PM

I hope they do build on the property north of the courthouse. Dennis is right, if you don't need the permission, don't ask to be nice and possibly open up a can of worms. JUST BUILD IT!

-- Posted by Rural Citizen on Fri, Oct 21, 2011, at 4:30 PM

Is the proximity to Central Elementary even an issue with a new jail facility?

-- Posted by DocBonesaw on Fri, Oct 21, 2011, at 6:21 PM

I have heard many concerns about the proximity to the school, park, churches, library, Norris Av. and the Frank Llyod Wright house BUT if the county has the legal authority to build it is their project.

-- Posted by dennis on Sat, Oct 22, 2011, at 9:45 AM

These are all valid concerns. But there are several (larger) jails in the state which are located near schools, downtown/residential areas, etc. From a security standpoint, it only makes sense to have the jail next to the courthouse. Although it would cost a little more, it would also make sense to have the jail attached to the courthouse for an even more secure environment.

-- Posted by bntheredunthat on Sat, Oct 22, 2011, at 5:25 PM

The CITY, and the COUNTY must make all decisions based on the PEOPLES wishes. If this is something that worries a citizen or citizens, then speak out. We can stop anything we want to, though most of us feel democracy is no longer alive, it is possible, we just have to say stop. Look past the public badgering that is strewn about by those local government officials, and dont worry about what their "families" will say or do. It is high time this county and city start paying attention to what is going on on here locally, the money and wealth, and tax base is shrinking very quickly...WAKE UP SW NEBRASKA.

-- Posted by cplcac on Mon, Oct 24, 2011, at 5:17 PM

Haha. The Frank Lloyd Wright House?! Oh, geez.

-- Posted by McCook1 on Tue, Oct 25, 2011, at 4:59 PM

Aaron, What does Red Willow County and McCook have that no other county or city in Nebraska has or will ever have?

A Frank Lloyd Wright designed home. Hopefully with more life experiences you will see the value and importance of this unique, historical building instead of laughing it off.

-- Posted by dennis on Wed, Oct 26, 2011, at 11:19 AM

Which once had a gas station across the street from it.

-- Posted by croswind on Wed, Oct 26, 2011, at 12:18 PM

Many famous landmarks are within spitting distances of much worse elements than a newly built jail. The Bronx Botanical Gardens is right in the heart of Gang Land, and although I wouldn't know the tourism statistics, there seems to be a fair amount of non gang related traffic to the place. I don't know what the tourism numbers would have been should it not been in Gand Land, primarily because it was.....and this is the ironic part, designed after the high gang activity had set in around the area.

My point is this, I don't believe we're building Alcatraz here, it will most likely appear similar in design to the courthouse which in and of itself is of a stately design. Surely there won't be an exercise yard facing the public I wouldn't imagine.

I certainly can and do appreciate architectural design, more than most I suspect, but does anyone know what type of tourism draw the Frank Lloyd Wright has?

And a final notion..... I don't believe this area gets a large amount or hardened criminals, though I might be surprised, I don't know of many prisoners that might need broken out of jail so my question is this: "if the facility is staffed 24 hours a day, what is the real danger involved? Just a sincere question, what am I missing on that topic?

-- Posted by Nick Mercy on Thu, Oct 27, 2011, at 2:08 AM

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