Co. Board addresses courthouse safety

A number of items were discussed at the Marquette County Board of Commissioners meeting Tuesday night.

One item on the agenda was courthouse security.  Commissioner Steve Pence said most security incidents he has been around in a courtroom are spontaneous.

“For those kind of things, the courts are asking us to consider security so at the very least weapons don’t make it into the courtroom, and that we have a stronger presence of bailiffs in the courtrooms,” Pence said.

He added having one entrance to a courthouse would help strengthen security, citing how Traverse City has one entrance to their courthouse.

Chairman Gerry Corkin said courthouse security has been an issue in the past, but the public should not be penalized from entering in multiple places.

“If there’s things we can do to limit dangers I’m all for it,” Corkin said, “but I guess I would have a real problem with closing off (the courthouse entrances) and making it into a maximum security prison type of entryways.”

The commission also wrote a letter to Senator Tom Casperson about state revenue sharing and to fully restore the sharing.

The commissioners say the county is under funded for the 2014 fiscal year, and that the county has implemented cost–saving measures.