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      $1.3 million makeover for courthouse

      Baraga county is looking to invest around a million dollars in energy upgrades to their courthouse. This comes after years of ongoing maintenance issues.

      "19th century building in 21st century...we're just trying to bring the energy efficiency up to the 21st century standards," said Jospeh O'Leary, Coiunty Prosecutor.

      In the last couple of years, maintenance issues keep piling up which adds to the deterioration of the County Courthouse. It starts at the basement of the empty old jail house with an outdated boiler that heats both buildings.

      "Just in the last few years we've had to renovate the basement because of air circulation issues, mold issues. That cost the county $200,000. We've had to abate asbestos in the old annex building and that cost the county tens of thousands of dollars," O'Leary added.

      So the county is looking at a $1.3 million project to make the building energy efficient and improve air ventilation. The plan is to renovate the courthouse with new windows and doors, install a new heating cooling system, a new boiler, upgrading the lighting and tearing down the old jailhouse.

      The project will provide at least $14,000 in energy savings annually.

      "Savings to our energy bills, our water and our lights monthly, also. That includes savings that's projected over 20 years by taking care of issues with our equipment now," said Wendy Goodreau, County Clerk.

      In order to fund the project, they're looking to purchase a bond.

      The project will also include upgrades to the administration and sheriffs department.

      The county board will be sending out letters to residents for public reaction, and they hope to have a decision within the next two months.