The Fremont County Board of Commissioners is hoping the State Loan and Investments Board will approve its application for a $2.6 million dollar grant to build a Riverton justice center.
It would cover half the cost of a new building to house offices for the sheriff and county attorneys, as well as a circuit court.
Riverton Circuit Court Judge Wesley Roberts says the small pre-fab building they’re currently using has long been insufficient.
In recent years, County Commissioners offered upgrades like security cameras and monitors, but Roberts says they came around to his side after someone shot a bullet into the courtroom from outside the building.
“What we haven’t had is any real movement to do anything about a new building until the bullet hole appeared,” Roberts says.
“I wished it hadn’t taken that, but sometimes that’s the way we react in life, is something happens to you, and then you respond.”
Fremont County has placed industrial storage containers around the current circuit court building to increase security.
Roberts says it’s still a stressful place to work.
“It’s sort of … a dark cloud over the whole process, because you know you’re working in a vulnerable or dangerous facility, every single day.”
SLIB will decide whether to award the grant at its meeting in June.