At age 15, Cass County officials say ‘new’ jail is showing its age

By By JOHN EBY / Niles Daily Star
CASSOPOLIS -- With the Law and Courts Building and the E-911 central dispatch facility which was in the works for 10 years both completed in 2003, attention turns to modernizing the 15-year-old "new" jail.
Next on his capital improvements status report came jail records software which tracks on computer all inmates moving through the facility.
The jail's original software from 1990 is also no longer being supported as of January 2004. The estimated replacement cost is $100,000.
Two other items fall under 2004, video arraignments and a maintenance building.
With Michigan State University Extension and 4-H relocated from offices in the front of the county garage on State Street to the 1899 courthouse, the maintenance department is expected to convert that existing building at a cost of $10,000 rather than spend $100,000 on a new facility.
Judge Susan Dobrich's Family Court is equipped with video capabilities.
The county is not imaging records at the present time. It is building up money in the Register of Deeds Automation Fund until it can afford to purchase imaging equipment.
Anticipated in 2006 are a $1 million 800-mghz radio system and replacing the Cass County building roof for $50,000.

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