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One-third of Monroe County Board faces recall elections, after voting to build new justice center

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About one-third of the Monroe County Board could be voted out Tuesday.

Eight supervisors face recall elections, after they voted to build a $27 million criminal justice center in Sparta during a recession that's hit the area hard.

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Board chairman Dennis Hubbard faces a similar recall vote Nov. 3.

The board must still act on bonding for the new justice facility, and those running against the incumbents hope to win and vote it down.

Officials have tried for years to replace a 69-bed jail and small court facilities now located in a 114-year-old courthouse.

They say there's no room for a third circuit judge to be added next summer. There's no room for security for inmates and other volatile defendants being shuttled in and out of court.

And the jail spends $1 million a year to send overflow inmates to other jails in the area. But the local Taxpayers Relief Committee says Monroe County faces harder times than most.

They point to major employers with heavy layoffs, growing numbers of houses for sale, and last year's closing of the large Jellystone Park camping resort in Warrens that paid hundreds-of-thousands of dollars in taxes.

Todd Berry of the Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance says there's a growing sign of disgust by people who see their governments not cutting back like everybody else.

Berry says there will be a lot more unhappy folks in December, when local property tax bills come out.

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