Clerk fears historic courthouse in jeopardy of becoming a ‘rundown building in Alpena’

At least one person is pleased some additional attention will be given to Alpena County’s historic courthouse on the corner of Chisholm Street and Ninth Avenue.

County Clerk Bonnie Friedrichs says the courthouse is a beacon of light in the community and should be treated as such. She recently told commissioners the “…once proud, respected building is in danger of becoming a rundown, uncared-for building in Alpena.”

Not only is Friedrichs concerned with the general cleanliness of the building, from dirty floors and windows to unkept toilets and clogged vents, but also more serious issues such as rusty handrails, damaged steps and more.

Commissioners recently approved spending an additional $10,000 on overtime for the maintenance department, a portion of which will benefit cleanup efforts at the courthouse.

Friedrichs believes the courthouse deserves to be on a regular cleaning and maintenance schedule, which would prevent large expenses in the future. Commissioners have not yet taken up that discussion, at least not publicly.