County OKs annex project changes
Polk County Enterprise, May 2007
LIVINGSTON — County commissioners approved change orders Tuesday for the office annex renovation project that will expand use of the former hospital site by 20 programs and government agencies and authorized Sheriff Kenneth Hammack to purchase two vehicles to replace two vehicles totaled in a collision March 27.
Change orders are being grouped together for approval, County Maintenance Engineer Jay Burks told Commissioners Tuesday.
The $230,322 approved Tuesday includes adding kitchen facilities, renovations for the personnel, auditor and treasurer offices as well as professional services for design and construction administration services.
The kitchen facilities at the County Office Annex will be used to prepare meals on a daily basis as part of the Aging Services program. When needed, the kitchen facilities will be available to workers in the Emergency Operations Center.
During the aftermath of Hurricane Rita, obtaining and distributing food for EOC staff became an issue while power was off.
“We had employees that couldn’t return to work for eight or nine days,” Burks said. “If we have kitchen facilities, we can keep our personnel working.”
The Aging Services meal program had to be moved after the weight of food items stored there began to cause problems with the flooring at the North Houston Street site.
Until the kitchen at the Office Annex is ready to use, meals are prepared at one site and sent to the other three senior citizens centers in Corrigan, Livingston and Onalaska.
The costs for the kitchen are estimated at $147,822, Burks said.
Bush Refrigeration has provided a bid of $20,850 for a walk-in cooler and freezer.
The changes in meal preparation are expected to save the Aging Services Program $17,000 per year.
The Alabama-Coushatta Tribe of Texas handles meal preparation for the senior citizens center on the reservation.
Burks explained that $5,500 in changes were for the HVAC system for the building.
The changes included awning type coverings for the loading zone, a generator and the cooler and freezer that will be placed outside the annex.
Providing a cover will extend the life of those pieces of equipment, Burks said.
Revisions to the emergency operations center amounting to $56,150 will separate the phone center from the conference room to allow EOC officials to continue their work while phone center staff take calls and direct information to the appropriate agencies.
When the office annex renovation is complete, Burks said it will provide office space for 20 county programs.
Seventeen are presently headquartered at the former hospital.
The latest changes will add the water district, county auditor’s department and county treasurer’s department.
Burks also reported on change orders that were done out of contingency fees on an emergency basis.
One of those emergency changes related to asbestos-containing materials that were removed from the boiler room because they had not been previously identified as containing asbestos.
Some of the materials had been removed and placed in a dumpster outside the building before maintenance workers became aware of their hazardous contents.
“It had contaminated the floors and outside the building, so I called in the asbestos team and it was removed according to proper procedure,” Burks said.
During an earlier construction phase that entailed removed asbestos, Burks said some duct board could not be removed from a closet because it was locked.
When the building is sealed off, we’re not allowed in or out so once we discovered they had not removed the duct board, we called them back in, Burks said.
Change order number 10 includes removing wood the edges of the building for $4,056.
Sheriff Kenneth Hammack told commissioners that the insurance company had agreed to pay the county $13,468 for the 2006 Crown Victoria K9 unit and $19,123,75 for the 2005 F150 Ford pickup.
County officials estimate it will cost an additional $45,000 to replace the two vehicles and transfer undamaged law enforcement equipment to the new vehicles.
Commissioners unanimously approved a motion to allow the sheriff to either advertise for bids or purchase them through a contract negotiated by the Texas Purchasing and General Services Department.
Other items approved during Tuesday’s commissioners’ court session include:
• Agreed to negotiate a contract with engineering firm Klotz & Associates of Lufkin for engineering services related to subdivision plat approval process and the county’s bridge/culvert policy.
• Approved up to $2,500 to customize system connections and services for the county telephone system.