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Town asks county for early release of Senior Center funds

Town Administrator Bob Browning requested Washington County release the full $500,000 committed to the Senior Center during the Feb. 11 meeting of the Health, Education and Welfare Committee.
According to the restrictions of the resolution approved during the April 23, 2012, county commission meeting, the first $400,000 was not to be released until the first floor of the building was completed. “We are three quarters through and haven’t requested any of the funding,” Browning said, reminding committee members the cost came in at twice what was expected. “We have since had some change orders, but we have been very satisfied with the quality of the work.”
However, Browning said the restrictions are making it difficult to meet the payment schedules for the contracted work, and access to the county funding is necessary to finish out the floor.
Commissioners also approved up to $100,000 in asphalt and paving services by the Highway Department, which Browning would like provided in cash instead.
“We can’t open if the parking lot is not finished,” he said, which the timeline indicates will be ready for paving before the asphalt plant reopens or during the start of a very busy spring season. In addition, Browning said the quality of the curbing and islands in the parking area would be greatly enhanced if undertaken by one contractor.
“We are shooting for summer to be open, but we want to pave as soon as the land is graded in order to stabilize it as soon as possible,” Browning said.
Director of Finance and Administration Mitch Meredith said the full $500,000 set aside for the project is available.
“There was also a sunset provision in the resolution,” Browning said, referring to the statement that indicates the committed dollars will be returned to the county’s General Fund if not used within 36 months.
Commissioner Joe Grandy made a motion to modify the original resolution and release the $400,000 toward construction upon approval by the full board, and up to $100,000 for paving unless the Highway Department can do the work. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Todd Hensley and passed with unanimous approval.