The bid for the new dog pound on North Shore Drive was awarded to Wilson Buildings for $1,289,547 at the weekly Wednesday morning meeting of the Highland County Board of Commissioners.
Jeff Duncan, president of the board of commissioners, said that bids for the project were opened at last week’s meeting and came in “somewhat higher” than they anticipated. He said that, following the meeting, they reached out to the architect to see if they could look at making some changes to get the price more in line with what they thought it would be. However, he said the increase was mostly due to the increase in the cost of materials.
Duncan also said they talked about possibly downsizing the building, but that in his experience with previous building projects, after a year or two he would always ask why the project wasn’t bigger, so said “I don’t know that downsizing was going to be the answer for us.”
David Daniels, a member of the board of commissioners, said that the facilities they’re currently working in are better than 50 to 60 years old and if they build something that would last that long, the cost spread over that length of time would be “negligible.”
Daniels also said that the commissioners have talked to people about what inflation has done to the cost of buildings and how, previously, the normal quoted cost for a square foot might be $100, whereas now, with increased building and material costs, the minimum costs might be $150 per square foot.
“I think that while we’ve looked at a number of different building projects that we might consider undertaking, I think that there’s the idea that you need to start resetting what you think the cost per square foot is all across the board, regardless of design or material,” Daniels said.
In other news, bids were opened for the Concord School demolition project located at 2281 S.R. 138 in Hillsboro.
The description for the project read: “The Project and Work for the Project consists of all labor, materials, equipment and services necessary for construction of the project identified as the Concord School Demolition, all in accordance with the Drawings and Specifications prepared by the Design Professional.”
The estimate from the engineer was listed at $75,000.
The seven bids for the project are as follows:
* Rippstein’s Excavating LLC for 87,100.
*Fillmore Construction for $178,000.
*Advanced Demolition Services LLC for $62,645.
*Baumann Enterprises, Inc. for $283,000.
*Dance Excavation LLC for $105,000.
*Alpha Constructin for $69,298.
*Battle Axe Construction for $114,000.
Ashleigh Willey, a commissioner clerk, said that she believed they would award the project at next week’s meeting after the bids are reviewed.
In other news, Duncan said he met with the juvenile detention center Tuesday night for quarterly meetings with other commissioners from the other counties represented there. He said the preliminary 2023 budget was shown to the group, with the final budget planned to be approved in November. He said this preliminary budget somewhat increased from the prior year, with the biggest increase coming from the cost of food for residents.
Duncan also gave an update on the situation with the Ohio Department of Taxation and the penalty given to the commissioners. He said he feels the office has made some “headway” and that they were notified that most of the penalty was cleared up. He said the reasoning for most of the penalty being waived was because the funds were in an account and located, they just weren’t where they needed to be.
In other news, Chris Snider, a representative from National Grid Renewables, was present at the meeting to update the board of commissioners on the Dodson Creek Solar Project.
Snider said he would like to start working on the Road Use Maintenance Agreement (RUMA) with the county engineer’s office soon. He said they reached out to the office last year but haven’t discussed anything further.
He also said the organization originally thought it would be on the agenda at the Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) this month for final approval, but that could be delayed until July.
Snider also said that, so far, all of the project’s other approvals from the OPSB have gone well and the organization is trying to work forward and try to get everything done in “a timely fashion.”
He also said that, if the project gets approval in the next 30 days, the plan would be to have the start of construction for the project begin in the fall or third quarter of 2023 and then take a little bit over a year to put into production.
In other news, John Leutz, a representative from the County Commissioners Association of Ohio (CCAO), attended the meeting to discuss the CCAO Energy Program. He said that Palmer Energy Company runs the program and that it is in a position to bring the Highland County Board of Commissioners into the group. He said the program has both gas and electric.
Leutz said that, when in the program, the organization puts your gas and electric consumption up for bid. He said the program works as consultants and wouldn’t make decisions for the board of commissioners; it would be up to the board. He said the program has 10 suppliers they “regularly work with in electric and gas.
Following a question from David Daniels on when the board of commissioners would need to decide to get quotes, Phillip Dysard, account manager at Palmer Energy Company, said it would be something where the program would go out for pricing or start right now, but wouldn’t start the contract until May of 2023.
The board of commissioners did not make a decision one way or the other on this matter.
In other news, there were six resolutions approved by the board of commissioners, which are as follows:
*Res. No. 22-102 is an authorization for a budget modification within Veterans Services in the amount of $8,000.
*Res. No. 22-103 is an authorization for a budget modification within Youth Services in the amount of $97.
*Res. No. 22-104 is an authorization for a request for an additional appropriation within the Sheriff’s budget from unappropriated funds within the Sheriff’s budget in the amount of $3,707.83.
*Res. No. 22-105 is an authorization for a budget modification within the Probation Department in the amount of $10,000.
*Res. No. 22-106 is an authorization for a budget modification within C-00 Child Support Enforcement in the amount of $5,000.
*Res. No. 22-107 is the awarding of the new dog pound project bid to Wilson Buildings in the amount of $1,289,547.
Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.