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Move county offices to old Walmart

Published: Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012 11:38 a.m. CDT

From Jim Stalker

Creston

One day, while driving east on Douglas Avenue, past the veteran's hospital, to the bottom of the hill in Des Moines, I noticed Polk County's new office building. The building, a former Target Store vacated for several years, had become the resting place for all county departments; the auditor, treasurer, probably the driver's license renewal, and all other departments similar to our own.

Instead of trying to cram into one smaller space every year, each larger-demanding county office, including the DHS, why not purchase the old Walmart building and move all county offices except law-related offices into that space? The selling price should be reasonable, since the present owner has had to pay the taxes on this nonproducing building for years.

If the county is so worried about raising income, as it seems in their search, to satisfy DHS requirements, that problem would be solved and the newly-vacated court house could be further renovated to house more prisoners, continue the court and add other related law offices, thus generating more income for the county. Right off, the need for an elevator would go away, thus saving $350,000 right now.

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