Commissioners turn down Ector County Courthouse proposal

Commissioners turn down Ector County Courthouse proposal
Ector County Courthouse. (Source:KWES.)

ECTOR COUNTY, TX (KWES) - The Ector County Courthouse has been a hot topic for the past few weeks and there is no use in trying to call them because their phone lines are still down for another couple of weeks.

That's not even the worse part, Ector County Judge Ron Eckert said on occasion he has had to bring out a bucket for a sewer leakage.

"We have safety issues, problems, structural concerns, we may even have a sick building up there," Eckert said. "So, we are trying to give people a quality work place."

Despite these issues, on April 23 the county commissioners rejected an $85 million proposal to build a new courthouse. However, that does not mean Ector County won't be seeing a new court house soon. It just comes down to how the money is going to be raised, which was one concern as to why it did not pass.

"I don't want to raise taxes, but it's a necessary evil," Precinct 3 Commissioner Dale Childers said. "We have to have a new courthouse, it's becoming a safety issue. So, we are going to have to issue debt, I believe. There's no way around that. I don't like it, but it's part of doing business."

Precinct 1 Commissioner Eddy Shelton said, including the $85 million, they will also need at least another $15 million to finalize the structure.

A five-member courthouse committee has been created which includes Odessa City Council members and county commissioners to push an action to go forward.

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