ELK RIVER -- It was a special day for the folks that represent Sherburne County.

County Board members were recognized Thursday by the Minnesota Judicial Council with a plaque for their commitment and efforts in building the newly renovated Judicial Building attached to the Sherburne County Government Center.

Sherburne County Board member Felix Schmiesing says it's a special day for them.

It means a lot. There are a lot of these facilities that get built and there is contentious relationships between the bench and the county board and we didn't have that. It means a lot the Judicial Council took the time to recognize us.

Schmiesing says the initial conversation for the upgrades began back in 2003, however, the project was put on hold to allow the county to better plan financially for the $61-million expansion while keeping a level tax rate.

Minnesota Chief Justice Lorie Gildea presented the award to the board members. She says facilities like in Sherburne County helps spread their message that everyone has access to justice.

Everybody no matter where they live in Minnesota should feel like they can go to a courthouse that's easy to get to and that they can be heard. This building very much carries out that promise.

Construction on the 100,000-square-foot courts wing began back in 2017 and staff started operations in the newly renovated facility in June of last year.

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