The $ 2,200,000.00 Purchase LACKED VisionRickey Stokes
Posted by: RStokes
Date: Feb 22 2021 10:31 PM
HOUSTON COUNTY: Houston County Sheriff Donald Valenza posted on Facebook about the purchase of the Five Star Credit Union building for the Houston County Sheriff Department.
On a chat forum, a coward who hides behind a screen name because he is spineless and not man enough to use his real name was poking at me and being derogatory towards me after Sheriff Valenza's post. ( Willie Stroker is his name )
SHERIFF VALENZA AND I AGREE 100 PERCENT ON MOST OF WHAT HE SAID
Rickey Stokes started with Houston County Sheriff Department in 1977. Donald Valenza started with Houston County Sheriff Department in 1979. I left the Sheriff Department to seek the Office of Coroner, of which was elected in 1982.
Both Rickey Stokes and Donald Valenza began in the what is now the Sheriff Department which was the Houston County Jail. Both Rickey Stokes and Donald Valenza was employed with the Houston County Sheriff Department when the "new" Houston County Jail was constructed that would last this county for many decades to come.
When the next Houston County Jail was constructed Donald Valenza was still with the Houston County Sheriff Department. I was around and involved but not employed with the Sheriff Department.
During my tenure as Coroner, the Coroner was actively involved in the death and murder investigations then today. Over my tenure as Coroner I have investigated many deaths and murders with Donald Valenza.
WHEN ANDY HUGHES RESIGNED AS HOUSTON COUNTY SHERIFF
When Andy Hughes made his announcement that he was resigning as Sheriff to accept a job with the State of Alabama. At the time of the announcement Donald Valenza was out of town. The morning after Andy Hughes announced I called Donald Valenza and asked him did he want to be Sheriff. His response was he never thought about because his age verses Andy's age. He never thought Andy would leave before him. I replied that everyone is saying that he does not want to be Sheriff, so it is time to make a decision. Donald Valenza said give him 15 minutes. He called back and said he was in.
I then made phone calls saying Donald Valenza never expressed interest because of his age verses Andy Hughes age. That is how dedicated and loyal he was to Andy. But he is in and would like to be Sheriff.
NO, I am not taking credit for Donald Valenza being Sheriff. But I am saying that I supported Donald Valenza for Sheriff.
I AGREE WITH DONALD VALENZA THE HOUSTON COUNTY SHERIFF DEPARTMENT NEEDS NEW OFFICES
I agree 100 percent plus with Donald Valenza that Houston County Sheriff Department needs a new building for the Sheriff Department. There is zero argument or debate from me or disagreement with Donald Valenza over that issue.
Donald Valenza, in his Facebook Post, discusses how the Sheriff Department has grown since he came on in 1979.
What we disagree on is that Sheriff Valenza states: "This might not seem as a wise purchase to most but if you look at this department our size now it would be very sufficient for the Houston County Sheriffs Office to continuously grown". Sheriff Valenza also states "there are federal rules apply in law enforcement when it comes to evidence rooms in the security of the facility we would not have the security of the facility at the farm center".
RICKEY STOKES RESPONSE Your elected Houston County Commissioners spent $ 2,200,000.00 for the Five Star building. That property located at 411 North Foster Street. This property is 1.28 acres of land. The property has 41 parking places. The building is locked in there is no where to grow with only the 1.28 acres of land available.
HOUSTON COUNTY COMMISSION owns 39.82 acres of land at 1701 East Cottonwood Road, which is the corner of Ross Clark Circle and Cottonwood Road. There are two buildings, already air conditioned, heated with rest rooms located on the 39.82 acres of land. The buildings can easily be made into a huge Sheriff Department. A huge and extremely nice Houston County Sheriff Department.
I am very sure the Walton County Florida Sheriff Department falls under the same federal rules for evidence as does Houston County. And they are in a metal building. Yet, with a building paid for and $ 2,200,000.00 available a evidence room could be constructed that would be more than adequate for the federal rules and them some. One that is safe, secure with the most elaborate security system available.
STORAGE Currently the Houston County Sheriff Department uses the Houston County Farm Center to store equipment. The arena needs demolishing because it is not a structural safe building.
With the money needed to renovate the current metal buildings into a master show case building, a lot less than $ 2,200,000.00, there would be plenty of money available to construct a warehouse for storage of seized items, vehicles, of specialty response vehicles the department might have.
There would be money to construct a warehouse for the Houston County Probate Judge to store the voting machines and supplies that go along with elections.
There would be money and room to construct the warehouse needed by Dothan-Houston County Emergency Management. One that is needed to store climate controlled supplies for COVID and or other emergencies.
LACK OF VISION so my points are: (1) Donald Valenza and Rickey Stokes are in lock step sync and agreement the Houston County Sheriff Department needs a newer facility for the headquarters of the Sheriff Department, (2) But we are not in lock step sync that spending $ 2,200,000.00 for a building on 1.28 acres that has zero room for growth, only 41 parking spaces is the wise choice and is being doing without vision.
NOW DONALD IF YOU GET MAD WITH ME, I guess you only want yes people around you and do not want anyone to have an opinion contrary to yours. I supported you to be appointed Sheriff and elected Sheriff. And just because my opinion varies from you, do not get mad with me.
But if you really think of what the point is, I am probably not as stupid as I look.
FACEBOOK POST FROM HOUSTON COUNTY SHERIFF DONALD VALENZA
FEBRUARY 22, 2021
I have been with the Houston County sheriffs office 42 years I watched our department grow enormously? with all the different divisions we have we have outgrown the old building that was built in 1938. The building has been repaired multiple times it still has tendencies to leak there has been mold in the carpet from past leaks. I feel the purchase of the five star credit union would be very sufficient for a department our size for at least the next hundred years.??? when I started we had approximately 24 deputies now counting I reserve certified and our part-timers we are at 92 sworn deputies plus our clerical workers which puts us over 100 also we have 70 employed in the jail. ? This may not seem like a wise purchase to most but if you look at this department our size now it would be very sufficient for the Houston County sheriffs office to continuously grow.? I have watched us go under federal court orders twice on our county jail due to overpopulation, a new jail was built to hold 389 inmates which we average between 390 and 407.? The thought process of the new jail was if we needed to add we could without building a new jail facility our present location with the sheriffs office we have nowhere to expand as our department continues to grow. We are the largest sheriffs department east of Mobile and south of Montgomery. I would feel free to answer any questions from any of our citizens have regarding the purchase of the five star credit union for the Houston County sheriffs office new location. There are federal rules apply in law enforcement when it comes to evidence rooms in the security of the facility we would not have that security at the farm center. We are one of the few sheriffs officers in the state that still response to city and county calls we will not deny the people of Dothan Service when they call