Thomas County Judicial Center Groundbreaking

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Commissioners say seven firms bid to construct the new building.

And Monday , Culpepper Construction out of Tallahassee was named as the contractor.

Culpepper's base bid was $8.8 million but with several additions to the project, the final cost will be around $9.3 million.

"It has been a longtime coming. We had one failed SPLOST vote in 2005 so we had to regroup and in 2006 the voters of Thomas county voted a SPLOST for building this building and some other projects," said Thomas County Commissioner Mary Jo Beverly.

The new building will be located directly across the street from the current courthouse.

The Judicial Center, which will house courtrooms and offices and is expected to be finished in July of 2009.