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Things go more smoothly at Safety Building Thursday

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- The Milwaukee County Courthouse remained closed for a fourth day Thursday, July 11th, but things went more smoothly at the Public Safety Building, one day after power outages and long lines hindered its opening.

"We can kind of exhale a little bit," Courthouse employee Charles Barnett said.

"The electricity was working fine, air conditioning -- all of that was pretty good," Courthouse patron Angela Klim said.

Thursday was the second day the Public Safety Building has been back open for business -- after a weekend electrical fire closed down the Courthouse.

"Things are a lot smoother," Barnett said.

Wednesday was the first day the Public Safety Building took on County criminal cases. Limited electrical power left people in the dark at times, and stopped elevators.

On Wednesday evening, two giant generators were unloaded and used to bolster power.

"We just kind of made a plan on how to operate and it just sort of turned out," Milwaukee County Clerk of Circuit Court John Barrett said.

"It’s like a water balloon, you squeeze one end and it enlarges on the other," Barrett said.

About 40% of employees are on the job and the criminal and civil divisions have been pushed into the same office.

"You’re just dealing with things as they come about," Barrett said.

Due to the fire and cleanup and repairs involved, there is limited space and limited work that can be done.

"We’re doing a lot of just postponing of cases and that’s not really the way we want to operate. We are very, very hopeful we can be back to full capacity as soon as possible," Barrett said.

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