Plans for the new Starke County Jail call for the eventual addition of a courtroom at the facility east of Knox on State Road 8, but the county may opt to include that project in the initial construction. President of the Commissioners Kathy Norem says the favorable financing terms the county received for the project combined with the sentencing reform that’s set to take effect make the new courtroom a higher priority. In order to accommodate this addition to the initial project, change orders will need to be turned in. Norem told the commissioners that the changes will result in some extra design costs. For instance, the video arraignment room in the current plans will be turned into a jury room, and an additional exterior door to accommodate a juror smoking area will be added. The office space for the detectives with the sheriff’s office would be moved upstairs in order to accommodate the circuit court clerks on the building’s first floor. The commissioners discussed the matter and voted to authorize DLZ to make the necessary changes to the plans in order to revisit the proposal with a better idea of the cost involved.
Written by Mary Perren
WKVI News Director Mary Perren is glad to be back home in northern Indiana and on the radio. She’s a North Judson native with more than 20 years of news experience. She’s worked in print and radio news in Indianapolis, Hopkinsville, Ky., Nashville, Tenn. and most recently in Winamac before taking over as news director for Kankakee Valley Broadcasting in February of 2013. Her work has been honored by the Associated Press, StateNets News Association, Curb Foundation, Hoosier State Press Association and IBA. When she’s not sitting in the anchor chair or chasing down news, Mary enjoys shopping for antiques, attending concerts and taking long walks and rides in her vintage Saab convertible, weather permitting. She’s also a hopelessly devoted Chicago Cubs fanatic who still cringes at the mention of Steve Garvey and Josh Beckett and maintains it wasn’t Steve Bartman’s fault.