The Town of Clarence expects to finish construction this summer on its $6.8 million Public Safety Building and courthouse, which will be located on four acres adjacent to the town hall
The opening of the new facility will culminate decades of behind-the-scenes work, said Town of Clarence Supervisor Patrick Casilio, including securing a 20-year lease with the New York State Police, who will be a tenant at the 1 Town Place building.
State police will move its road patrol and its zone 2 headquarters from Boston back to Clarence, said Casilio. The new building will have space for up to 50 state police officers who will patrol Erie and Wyoming counties in Troop A's zone 2 in Western New York.
State police will pay $50,000 a year for the first 10 years of the lease - the same price it has paid when it was located on Main Street in Clarence in a building that was much smaller, said Castilio. The next five years the state will pay $60,000 a year and the final five years of its lease it will pay $65,000 a year.
The building will also have an Erie County sheriff's barracks and a new courthouse for the Town of Clarence.
"We did not have a real courthouse in the Town of Clarence," said Casilio. "This (new courthouse) will definitely be state of the art."
He said Clarence's town hall was built in 1977 and the courts shared the building with the town hall.
"When the town hall was built we had about 8,000 residents. Now we have 31,000 residents. That's why we needed an updated courthouse to handle people through our system," added Casilio.
The Erie County Sheriff's Office barracks will move from an antiquated site in the nearly 80-year-old Clarence highway garage to 2,200 square-feet in the new Public Safety Building. The town, which does not have its own police department, will provide the space at no cost to the county. The sheriff's office will use the barracks as a satellite office for four road patrol officers and two detectives. The sheriff's office will also have a booking room as well as an area to conduct interviews and investigations there, said Casilio.
The additional 7,700 square-feet will be used for the town court facilities.
"This will be safer for everyone - safer for the courts and safer for the people who use the court system," he said. "There will be proper facilities to handle the public with a dedicated entrance with a metal detector and and a shielded area for child protective interviews."
Casilio said the funding to build the new Public Safety Building was provided by the Town of Clarence, which he said has one of the lowest tax rates in Erie County - at 95 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation. The town bonded $6.8 million for the project.