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County court tower finally a reality

The Maricopa County Court building that was the focus of investigations, lawsuits and legal battles was formally dedicated this afternoon. Sheriff Joe Arpaio and former county attorney Andrew Thomas accused county supervisors and judges of misspending county money. The cases were dismissed. Now, most people are talking about a new beginning. KJZZ’s Al Macias reports.

AL MACIAS: The battle over the $340 million tower led to lawsuits and criminal charges. But today the talk was about what the new building that features 22 courtrooms with the latest technology. Sheriff Arpaio who once accused the Board of Supervisors and judges of a criminal conspiracy had a different tone.

JOE ARPAIO: I think this is a good touch for a beautiful new building.

REPORTER: Do you still think this is a symbol of corruption?

ARPAIO: Who said that?

REPORTER: You did, two years ago.

ARPAIO: That was yesterday, today is today.

MACIAS: Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox said the focus was always on what was best for the county.

MARY ROSE WILCOX: We planned for it for a decade, and planned for construction for seven years and no matter what controversy came up, we went ahead and built it.

MACIAS: The new court tower will open for business on Feb. 21 and judges will begin moving into the court on Feb. 27.