The Winnebago County Board passed a resolution Tuesday night to spend just over $1 million to build a housing facility for certain violent sex offenders that state law requires the county to house.

Multiple single-resident housing units would be built on county property near County Y to house recently released offenders.

In 2018, then-Gov. Scott Walker signed a law shifting the responsibility to counties to provide housing or suitable housing to purchase for certain sex offenders who committed a sexually violent offense. Previously, it was the state’s responsibility.

The locations where released offenders can be placed face strict parameters. For example, they must be at least 1,500 feet from a school, child care facility, public park, house of worship or youth center.

Winnebago County has had trouble finding them housing in the limited time the law allows. If a suitable place for housing can’t be found within 120 days, the county can be fined up to $1,100 per day.


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