Raymond Council discusses potential new public safety building, storm damage
By SCOT PEARSON
Everybody was a buzz with the events of the day all absorbed with water damage and what they experienced with the increase of rain. Some spoke to being very busy during their full-time employment, others remarking simple damage to their property, but at the drop of the gavel by Mayor Jason Dunsmoor, the Raymond City Council got right down to business.
As they moved past the obligatory approval of the posted agenda, consent agenda (providing just over $60,000 in monthly due outs), and previous minutes they moved swiftly into the meat of the meeting.
With no communications received from the clerk's office, and no one speaking on behalf of the public, the Public Hearing for the Emergency Facility Feasibility Plan was opened.
The public hearing was to allow the city to pay for the initial plan and design work that was conducted by Harbor Architects, a final payment for services rendered.
With no one in attendance from the public the council had some discussion about the facility prior to allowing the final payment check.
The Emergency Facility, also referred to as the Public Safety Building, will combine and house both the Raymond Police Department and the Raymond Fire Department in one singular complex. The design also calls for a common or "Community Room" that will be in the center of the facility and able to be utilized by the public.
The reason the city of Raymond is looking at the possibility of a new Public Safety complex was outlined in the single page brochure to sum things up; and also available in a banded detailed "thick as a brick" binder for the council members to look at length.
"The existing public safety building, located at 212 Commercial Street, was originally constructed in 1927, further expanded in the 1950's," notes the pamphlet.
The information continues to explain that there have been no significant upgrades since the expansion and facility is in need of critical repairs.
Further the demand for both fire and police is becoming more diverse and continues to grow. The current building is now inadequate for their responsibilities, and based on age and condition, renovations were deemed unfeasible. As will the new design require additional space and cannot fit in the existing footprint of the current facility.
The proposed solution will accommodate all that is lacking in the current space as well as be built for future needs.
Fire Chief Todd Strozyk made comment that the building is over 80 years old.....
The new Public Safety building would accommodate both departments as well as provide the life, health and safety needs of emergency personnel. It would also satisfy both departments' need for additional space by having shared or common areas that either, both, or the public could utilize. The proposed building site is the city owned property east of the present facility with a border along Blake Street to the south, Third Street to the east and Commercial Street to the north. The plan also indicates the demolition of the existing building and conversion into a parking lot and emergency vehicle use.
Council member Kaley Hanson had reservations about the demolition of the "historic" building.
The projected cost, relatable in "today's" dollars speaks of $6.2 million for the purchase of the city owned site, with an overall amount at $8.2 million for the 22k square foot complex project.
Alternate site locations were assessed at $6.8 million purchase and in all in for construction, site preparation, furnishings and contingencies at $10 million.
Council member Dee Roberts brought out the idea that if the city was looking to make a new facility, why not include Raymond City Hall.
"If you are going to dream why not dream big," said Roberts.
With the current condition of city hall, and a proposed plan for new construction, it seemed a very feasible idea.
Raymond Clerk Hester Gilleland advised the council that the final plans nor the site are concrete yet, this part was only to get approval of the concept, and pay the designer for their work. Both the police and fire departments were more than willing to listen to additional ideas about the facility and its proposed location. The council was willing to pay for the design work and move the plan to the next level of the civic process. The current design cost was covered under a CDBG Grant.
The public meeting closed at 6:12 pm.
Department head reports followed the Public Meeting with all talk about the extra inch rain shower that was experienced in town.
Chief Strozyk and the Raymond Fire Department responded to flooded basements and had to assist the Bay Center area because of road closures. All residents were okay. He further relayed to the council that new recruits will soon be attending training from 4-6 months, all will be certified EMT's.
Police Chief Chuck Spoor reported that they as well were busy dealing with flooded areas, but noted that they did not have to deal with the troubles experienced in South Bend. He also thanked the work of the Public Works, and Department of Transportation.
"Things went good and smooth, given the conditions," said Chief Spoor.
Public Works Director Dean M. Parsons said he had men involved prior to midnight on Jan. 4, already monitoring the situation.
"The new waste water treatment plan is registered for 7 million gallons, we processed around 10 million," said Director Parsons.
A question came from the council directed at Public Works about concerns of sandbags. As it was told that local hardware stores run out during the day.
"Citizens can come get sandbags, they just have to ask. We have a sand pile where they can fill their bags," said Director Parsons.
Clerk Gilleland provided a revision of the "Catastrophic" water consumption that was brought out at the end of last year.
She presented the revision to the council so that they may adviser her prior to bringing it back in an official City Ordinance that will go into effect after approval.
The revision to City Code 14.04.240 Remission of rates - Conditions: gives the city language to determine what "Catastrophic" means (determined at 3x the normal consumption), and what they are willing to provide to the customers who experience a catastrophic line break or over consumption of water due to a leak.
There was a consensus that an adjustment in the billing would be made. The actual verbatim revision should be drafted to the current city ordinance by the councils next meeting waiting their first reading.
There was also a quick chat about the possibility to move to a monthly statement, which is still under review.
Mayor Dunsmoor brought out some unfinished business that was started at the close of the year, the review of contracts with museums, the library, theatre and pool.
It was suggested that each council member take a contract and work through them to see how they or if they could be amended prior to the next signing.
In all, six contracts were directed to, including: Council Member Hanson for the Raymond Theatre; Council member Ray Robinson for the Carriage House Museum; Council Member Betty Soverign for the Timberland Regional Library; Council Member Ian Farrell for the city pool and Council Member Dee Roberts for both the Seaport Museum and the Public Market.
Council members wished each other a Happy New Year during council comments and Council Member Farrell brought out that a new Mayor Pro Tem would need to be appointed, as done annually, as well as a look at the current committee assignments.
Mayor Dunsmoor took note to have that ready for the next meeting.
The Raymond City Council closed at 6:43 pm with the next meeting scheduled for January 20 at 6 pm.
|No Related Articles|
You may not be getting all you can out of your browsing experience
and may be open to security risks!
Consider upgrading to the latest version of your browser or choose on below: