Since the 1969 portion of the courthouse was built, the county’s population has more than doubled going from nearly 83,000 residents to more than 172,000 as of the last census. Nearly 50 years’ worth of public use of that specific portion of the courthouse combined with increased demands from today’s much larger population has created both serious safety concerns and major difficulties that must be resolved. Some of these issues include failing systems, ADA compliance issues, space limitations for judges and staff, and the need for future growth. It is important to note that limitations of space and outdated design create security concerns for court personnel, victims of crime, witnesses and the general public because criminal defendants can’t always be kept separate in public pathways.
The County received a report from the Ohio Supreme Court pertaining to security and homeland security at the courthouse. This report reinforces the need for a new courthouse. The County cannot release this report to the public because in doing so it would place our employees at risk.
The County and City agree that a joint courthouse is the most efficient and effective use of tax dollars which would allow the two courts to share one security entrance and personnel, parking, halls, meeting rooms, restroom facilities and utility costs while offering one convenient location to the public.