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Police Say Current Building is Dangerous and Inefficient

Cheyenne Police Department Building (Doug Randall/TSM)

Cheyenne Police officials say their current building on Capitol Avenue is plagued by leaking roofs, a crumbling basic structure, serious electrical issues, undrinkable water and a long list of other issues to the point where it is costing taxpayers millions of dollars and posing a threat to public safety. Lt. Mark Munari, leading a tour of the facility Wednesday, said it was originally built in 1969 as a home for the telephone company. He says the department moved into the building in 1985 when the former police department was devastated by a flood. Munari says the move was supposed to be temporary at the time. He says among other issues is the fact the building electrical system ”uses 1969 wiring to support 2012 technology”, saying blown fuses and electrical outages are common problems and that the wiring poses a fire hazard.

Munari says space issues prevent police in many cases from separating crime suspects and victims, contrary to accepted police procedure.  Police say suspects also must be walked into the facility by officers, affording them a chance to escape. Munari also says the building is not compliant with the Americans With Disabilities Act,  and the evidence storage area  lacks adequate space. He says an efficiency study recently found that space issues and other problems would cost taxpayers $25 Million over the next forty years if they remain in the building, and electrical problems will cost another $4 Million.

Police are asking voters to approve a $25 Million  6th penny sales tax appropriation for the city police and fire departments as well as other emergency responders to locate in the former Dinneen Car Dealership in downtown Cheyenne, which would be renovated. That proposal is one of several items to go before Laramie County voters on the 6th penny ballot on Tuesday, August 21.

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