XENIA — After receiving two separate court orders, the Greene County Commissioners decided March 8 to construct a courtroom for the county’s probate court in the lower level of the Greene County Juvenile Court building.
Necessary funding for the building modifications at 2100 Greene Way Boulevard will come from the county’s general fund.
The commissioners made the decision after receiving a court order March 5 from Greene County Probate Court, which required the board to immediately designate Courtroom 3 in the county’s courthouse as the permanent probate court courtroom. Additionally, the order required the board to pay the court’s legal fees in order to bring suit against the board.
Simultaneously, the board received a court order from Common Pleas Court- General Division establishing sole and exclusive management of Courtroom 3. Common Pleas falls under the leadership of Judge Stephen Wolaver and Judge Michael Buckwalter.
Courtroom 3 is located in the lower level of the courthouse and is used multi-purposely for civil proceedings, grand juries and by visiting judges. Currently the probate division, which is under the direction of Judge Thomas O’Diam, has an office and a small courtroom on the first floor.
“You have two competing court orders that you received this week for the same space. I need direction from you on how you want to proceed,” County Administrator Brandon Huddleson told the commissioners.
After meeting in executive session with an attorney, board members voted, passing the resolution for future construction.
“The commissioners have worked with both courts for months to try to come up with an amicable solution for both courts,” Huddleson said after the meeting.
The modifications are also to include “suitable office space” for the probate division.
“It should be relatively easy to convert the space,” Huddleson added.
E.J. Griffith, court administrator, said she was pleased with the decision.
“On behalf of the General Division of the Common Pleas Court, I am pleased that the Board of Greene County Commission has heard the concerns of Judge O’Diam and the probate court that its current facilities here in the courthouse are inadequate to serve the people of Greene County,” she said, “and that the board has chosen to provide new and better facilities to better service the people of Greene County, at the juvenile court building here in Xenia.”
Contact Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498 or follow @annadbolton on Facebook.
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