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Vote to fill commission seat delayed until Friday

The Walworth County Commissioners are still without a fifth commissioner as a tie vote Tuesday, Feb. 6, brought another scenario into the procedure.
There were four names submitted to fill the seat vacated when Mellissa Miller, who represented District 4 in the county, resigned on Thursday, Jan 18. Mobridge residents Jeff Jensen, Duane Mohr and Duane Martin and Glenham resident Marion Schlomer all submitted their names for consideration.
The commission voted by ballot, with Mohr and Schlomer receiving two votes each.
By state statute, because of the tie vote, the county auditor, Becky Krein, would then cast the vote to break the tie.
According to Walworth County States Attorney Jamie Hare, Krein asked the commission to table that vote until she had time to consider her vote. Hare said Krein felt she was not fully informed and could not make the decision at that time. Krein said she wanted to get more information on both men in order to make the correct decision for the people of Walworth County.
The vote will be cast at a special meeting on Friday, Feb. 9.
The commission also heard presentations from three firms interested in working with the county on designs and plans for the new jail, should the commission decide to build a new facility.
Those three firms were EAPC Architects and Engineers of Sioux fall, RSArchitects (Randall-Stanley) from Sioux Falls and JLG Architects of Rapid City.
Representatives of the firms submitted presentations on projects on which they have worked, their experience in this type of project, proposals for designing the project and some cost estimates.
The commission has not made a decision on whether they will build a 50 bed or more facility, whether it will be a courthouse and jail combined facility or if it will be an attached to the current building or be a stand alone facility.
Hare said the county would hire a structural engineer to investigate the integrity of the courthouse before they make a decision on the type of facility they will build, if they make the decision to move forward.
Hare said the engineer’s report will have an impact on the commissioners’ decisions
The commission tabled the decision on which firm they would hire to design the new facility until there is a full commission to vote.
The video of this meeting and all Walworth County Commissions meetings can be accessed through the Walworth County S.D. website.
– Katie Zerr –