County Exploring New Facility on Griffin Home Property
by Graham Sturgeon, co-editor
(Independent Photo/Graham Sturgeon)
Earlier this month, the Shiawassee County Board of Commissioners opted to spend $5,000 to move ahead with a site plan for the 20-plus acres of county-owned land on S. Shiawassee Street in the city of Corunna. The site plan, which includes space for a new county jail, will determine the viability and financial feasibility of building a facility on the site to house the county’s buildings and grounds and drain commission offices.
The board began exploring alternative homes for the two offices after the city of Corunna announced it would begin charging the county $75,000 annually in rent for the facilities the offices currently occupy on the city-owned property on South Norton Street.
The site plan will assess the cost of adding sewer, water, power and utilities; of land maintenance and clearing; and for the completion of a survey. The property, which is located east of South Shiawassee Street and south of M-21 behind the Kmart building, already contains the county’s parole/probation/work release center, so some of the necessary infrastructure is already in place and may only need to be extended.
While discussing the site plan during their June 13 Committee of the Whole meeting, the commissioners shared that a new facility could be constructed and ready by January 2019. The commissioners also noted that construction would cost roughly what the county would pay the city of Corunna to rent the buildings on Norton Street for four years.
Corunna City Council member Sharon Granger commented during the June 19 Corunna City Council meeting that she was “taken aback” by the news that the county is exploring building a new facility, but City Manager Joe Sawyer later noted that the city of Corunna supports the board’s decision to develop the Griffin Home property.
The board held a special meeting to further discuss the county’s options on Thursday, June 21, after The Independent went to press, so additional details will be forthcoming.