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Vilas County Courthouse Security Debated


Security  for both employees and visitors to the Vilas County courthouse complex when the new $11 million addition is completed was debated by the county public property committee this week with different views expressed for a complete system at one public entrance or increased security for specific departments depending on their functions.

Having a complete system at one entrance with metal detectors and staffed whenever the courthouse is open received both support and opposition. County clerk Dave Alleman indicated Judge Neal "Chip" Nielsen preferred a complete system but county board chairman Ron DeBruyne (dee-BRUIN) felt something less intrusive should be looked at. "Escorting visitors through a metal detection system disturbs me," DeBruyne said, indicating he understood the need in the court system but viewed it as an inconvenience to visitors.

He received support from other committee members who felt that although an incident can happen at any time, they could not see putting everyone through an inspection. The committee will look at different levels of security including personnel in uniform or plain clothes, should they be county employees or contracted, should they have firearms or stun guns or both. Supervisor Art Kunde predicted cost will drive the final decision.

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