Mitchell County courthouse funding approved

OSAGE, Iowa – It was a big morning for the Mitchell County Board of Supervisors as they decided to go ahead with an $8.7 million general obligation bond.

Supervisors say they went ahead with this decision as it was the bond option with the lowest interest rate and a good contingency plan built in.

The bond was passed in a 2-1 vote following a public forum on the issue, and Joel Voaklander, one of the county supervisors who voted in favor of the decision says, he is just excited to have things moving forward.

“I am really happy with the way things turned out today,” Voaklander says, “and I think everybody else is too. I think everybody’s come to a consensus that we’re building a courthouse and we’re going forward.”

Along with the major vote, the supervisors also met with the public to hear about their general questions and concerns regarding the new courthouse plans and layout.

Rita Dvorak of Riceville was one of the many in attendance at Tuesday’s public hearing, and she was also one of the many who came armed with questions.

One of the common concerns from the public during the hearing was in regards to the overall size of the facility.

Many questioned the magnitude of the more than 1,000 square foot lobby as well as the general functionality of many parts of the building.

Dvorak says that while she had many of her questions answered at the forum, she wishes that there would have been more information available to her.

“Everybody wants to be included in the process,” Dvorak says, “and the feeling was that we weren’t included in the process, so I wanted to bring that message and also I wanted to just have a better understanding of what the proposal was.”

She says she left the meeting with a much better understanding of everything that will be going on in the next couple of months and that she will feel more confident spreading this information to others in her community.

While the bond was decided on Tuesday morning, the term of the bond will be determined at next week’s supervisor meeting.

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