Editor’s note: A letter in the agenda packet for Wednesday’s Nevada City Council meetings shows the precarious state of keeping the courthouse in the historic downtown. It exemplifies how government agencies work in “silos,” focusing on their own special interests, rather than collaborate.
My hunch is the same as it has been all along: A new courthouse will wind up near the Rood Center for logistic reasons that suit the courts, and dealing with the unintended consequences of relocating it — AKA, a big vacant building downtown to join the others — will be addressed “at a later date.” It’s just how things work around here. Though up for re-election, the judges aren’t willing to be leaders on this issue either. Here are excerpts from the letter and a link below:
“After many months, the State agreed with the local members of the (project advisory group) to make the current site the preferred site for the new construction,” according to a letter from judges dated Feb. 28 to the Nevada City Council and County Board of Supervisors.
“Recently, the State has reversed course, deciding that the current site is not desirable for the new construction, stating budget issues as a principle reason. The State also notes that there has been local opposition to demolishing the current structure in order to build a new courthouse.
“The judges appreciate and share the community’s concerns about the detrimental impacts economically and culturally of relocating the courthouse outside of the downtown area.
“We understand that a potential result of abandoning the current buildings will be a large vacant space left in the downtown area.
“If the voice of the community is not heard, either due to dissent, lack of consensus, or procrastination, then the State will decide for us where our next county courthouse will be situated. Thus, whether the new courthouse is built on the current site or elsewhere may well depend on a vocal, strong community commitment to a particular site.
“In this regard, we respectfully urge the Council and the County to take a leadership position, both to address its obligations to its constituents and to give us direction as we continue to participate in the PAG.”
The letter is here. (Scroll down a bit, past the “WaterWise” discussion).