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Supervisors Debate Courthouse Remodel

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Sonora, CA — The Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors had split opinions on how to maintain the historical value of the downtown abandoned courthouse building, while also utilizing it as a future board meeting room.

Funding has yet to be identified for the planned remodel, which will cost several millions of dollars, but the board is working to finalize the design aspects.

Consensus was gained on several points, 3-2, with supervisors voicing different opinions.

A decision that garnered a 5-0 consensus was to incorporate the existing judicial bench into the future board dais.

An item of contention is to remove most of the wooden chairs that are in the room and to have them moved someplace else, potentially a museum. In addition, work will be done to have the dais centered, and the existing jury box will be reduced.

Supervisor Ryan Campbell voiced displeasure that a workshop was held last year, with several members of the community participating, and at the time the board expressed a desire to keep more of the original aspects in place. He feels the revised plan is going too far.  Some other supervisors, like board Chair David Goldemberg, stressed that the earlier discussions have evolved, and more should be done to improve the feasibility of the room.

Goldemberg noted the end goal is to bring more people into the room to appreciate it so that it can be a “living and breathing” space that people can enjoy.