Winnebago could be spending up to $2,000 to improve security at City Hall.
At the recommendation of Police Chief Eric Olson, councilmembers voted Monday night to install protective glass at the counter, new doors and locks.
Olson says there have been a couple of incidents involving irate citizens and he’s worried that something bad might happen.
“I feel we need to lock City Hall down for employee safety,” says Olson. “Even though we are a small community, violence can happen anywhere and anytime.”
Initial estimates for the improvements are at $1,295, however, councilmembers want a two-piece window that will likely raise the price.
Councilman Scott Robertson was quick to support Olson’s request, saying, “times have changed and it’s crazy.”
“I don’t think you can be safe enough. We should have been thinking about this a long time ago,” he says. “It’s an awful cheap price to keep someone safe.”
City Administrator Chris Ziegler says he supports making City Hall a safer workplace, but the council should considered how the community may respond.
“I am afraid we will get push-back from the community,” says Ziegler. “Some will say, ‘I don’t feel welcomed here.’”
Olson says someone getting hurt is a lot worse than any “push-back” from the community.
Although installing two-piece protective glass at the counter will make communication better and a little more personal, councilmembers don’t want safety to be comprised.
“I am more concerned about someone jumping over the counter, than someone shooting,” says Deputy clerk Jessi Sturtz.