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Friday, June 27, 2008

St. Paul / Officials evaluate City Hall security

Please click onto the COMMENTS for the story.


Blogger Bob said...

New plan will alter entry checkpoint
By Dave Orrick
Article Last Updated: 06/26/2008 09:59:07 PM CDT

All three public entrances to the Ramsey County Courthouse and St. Paul City Hall will remain open under a new security plan agreed to Thursday.

A panel of county, city and judicial elected officials had considered closing the Fourth Street or skyway entrances when the building's security is upgraded late this year.

While the impact of the security upgrades has been under discussion since April, this week's shooting of an armed man who took hostages during a Morrison County Board meeting
underscored the topic's importance Thursday.

For example, the panel quickly dismissed one option floated by county building officials: Secure only the courtrooms in the building but leave unfettered access to all other areas, including the chambers where the City Council and County Board meet.

"I can't believe anyone on the City Council or County Board would be happy with that after what happened this week," said Chief Judge Gregg Johnson, who sits on the panel.

"Anything is better than what we've got," Sheriff Bob Fletcher muttered to a colleague as the panel was discussing options.

The current situation is neither convenient nor secure enough, said Fletcher. Commissioner Tony Bennett, a former U.S. marshal, agreed.

Because of the layout of the Fourth Street entrance, a single line from an airport-style security checkpoint often backs up through a revolving door, forcing people to brave the elements in winter and creating a potential safety hazard. Meanwhile,employees and contractors with security clearance jostle their way through the crowd and with a quick flash of an ID card, bypass the checkpoint.

"We're relying too much on that one glance at that card, which can be altered very easily or faked," Fletcher said.

The new plan, which could be in place within six months, will tie those ID cards into a database that can be instantly updated. Wave the card past a sensor on a turnstile and a guard will see the employee's face on a computer screen. And if, say, the worker was fired the day before for threatening his boss, they'll know not to let him in.

The new system will attempt to eliminate the lines backing up outside by moving the operations farther inside Memorial Hall, the building's signature three-story atrium. That concerned County Board Chair Jan Parker and Bennett, who pushed for closing the Fourth Street entrance to all but employees and disabled people.

But their plan didn't sit well with Council President Kathy Lantry and Council Member Dave Thune. "We can't force people to walk around the building (to Kellogg) in the snow," Thune said. Johnson sided with Thune and Lantry, breaking a possible tie.

Access from the skyway over Fourth and from Kellogg Boulevard will be reconfigured slightly under the plan, which will cost $299,080, according to current estimates.

3:03 PM  
Anonymous JAM said...

There is probably a good reason these judges are wanting better security with all the judicial corruption of some of these judges.

These judges and city officials wanting the upgrade, are seizing the moment to spend more of your tax dollars for security they don't need .

They have 3-4 Ramsey County Sheriffs and 4 security employees from a private security outfit already and x-ray at all enterances.

Its not worth the 300'000 they want to spend to save the asses of the Ramsey District Court who are corrupt.

I wouldn't shed any tears if someone else took them out.

Just my opinion and perhalps of others


12:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what are you saying exactly JAM?

You're an asshole whom I'd probably smile while kicking your ass and then having you hauled in front of one those judges and I'll be sure to get of those lawyers to prosecute your case and watch the wonderful treatment you get as the deputies take you into custody and be sure to pass the word along to your roommates in St Cloud that you were an informant.

Will you shed a tear then?


1:13 PM  
Anonymous JAM said...

You and what army ?
You can't even read you !
You probably came from Harlem !
Go back to your alley dumpster living you New York Fuck !

11:58 PM  

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