Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Oops!

Ben Lanka writes that Jim Herman is upset the county didn't move fast enough to buy the old North American Van Lines building, which is where he wanted to move the headquarters of the Allen County Sheriff's Department.
Herman did not hide his displeasure that the purchase fell through. He didn’t blame anyone but said the slow pace of government made the situation inevitable.

“It is extremely difficult to get things done in a timely manner when you’re working with government entities,” he said.

Herman has publicly advocated for a new headquarters since at least last October. He said the old Irene Byron Sanitarium, where most of his headquarters is located, has had numerous mechanical breakdowns, including water leaks, sewer pipe breaks and defective windows. The sanitarium at Carroll Road and Indiana 3 was retrofitted 30 years ago as a temporary location for the sheriff.

Herman received approval to seek appraisals on the Kroemer Road building in July and was expected to make a purchase offer by August. His department even put together a proposal on how to transform the property into a permanent headquarters. The actual purchase of property must be made by the commissioners.
It's likely the question of where to move the department will be one of the key issues of the upcoming campaign for sheriff, and someone like Mike Foster can give his candidacy a boost by proposing an innovative (and cost-effective) solution to the current situation. If I was Ken Fries, I would come up with a genius idea of my own in time for Friday's fundraiser in order to deny Foster any momentum.

This situation, by the way, mirrors the city's mismanagement of a possible vacating of the City-County Building (and Graham Richard's obsession with moving into Renaissance Square). The city has to decide what it's going to do by January and still hasn't made up its mind. (But consultants are working on studies as we speak, so there's nothing to worry about!)

Glad to know our local government is minding the store for us!



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