BRATTLEBORO, Vt. — Windham County purchased a vacant facility this week, which it plans to use for law enforcement and judicial operations, according to a news release Tuesday from the sheriff’s office.
The property at 185 Old Ferry Road in Brattleboro will temporarily house the Vermont Judiciary while its existing Windham County location undergoes renovations. It eventually will be the sheriff’s office headquarters.
The Vermont Judiciary is currently working out of the Superior Court Civil Division in the county courthouse in Newfane, Vt., which lacks the air-handling system necessary to host trials safely during the pandemic, the release says.
The new facility will provide a place for the Vermont Judiciary to operate while the county upgrades the air-handling system at the courthouse — a process that is expected to last between 18 and 24 months, the release says.
“The County will offer this interim space to the Judiciary while the renovations of our historic courthouse are carefully made,” Assistant Judge Patricia Duff said in the release. “This opportunity allows for a temporary space to house the Civil Division while also ensuring our Sheriff has an office appropriate for the duties they perform.”
The current sheriff’s office is off Route 30 in Newfane, according to the release, but lacks the infrastructure necessary for the building to be accessible for all and run efficiently.
“We need space for training, access for people with disabilities, a reliable electrical system, and safety equipment that all come with significant price tags,” Sheriff Mark Anderson said in the release.
The new facility will also allow the sheriff’s office to improve its emergency dispatch handling and facilitate training that officers would otherwise have to travel for, Anderson said in the release.
The facility was valued at $810,000 but was purchased for $500,000, according to the release. The sale closed Monday.
“We look forward to developing new ways to utilize the property on Jail Street,” Anderson said, referencing the existing sheriff’s office. “We’ll be engaging with community partners to consider next steps as we work toward progress and modernization here in Windham County.”
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