By Leeann Akers - Editor
Oct. 23, 2013 — It seems the Carter County Library Board forgot to look before leaping.
The group recently purchased a building on Main Street in Grayson for its east branch. However the first bids for renovations indicated that getting into the building will be a much more expensive issue than anticipated.
Because of strict regulations for public buildings, the renovations needed to occupy the building apparently are more complex than expected.
The board held a special meeting on Monday night in Grayson to discuss the predicament.
“It seems like the bids that were placed were for the entire plan,” said Board member Mindy Click. “What things in the full plan can we not do and still legally occupy the building?”
Jackie Clevenger of Architectural Planning and Design was on hand to discuss the project.
The minimum requirements to occupy the building include safety lighting, handicapped restrooms, a fire-safe hallway exit to the back of the building and new HVAC.
“We are waiting on a ruling from the Kentucky Division of Plumbing to see if we can open with the existing restroom,” Clevenger reported. “It doesn't hurt to ask but I am not hopeful.”
The Board discussed breaking the project into phases in order to make in more affordable, including not having public restrooms and utilizing a smaller portion of the building.
“If we don't have the restrooms then we won't be able to have the summer reading program,” said Library Director Nellie Jordan. “Without the restroom we can't serve food – and that is going to be a big problem for the school children who rely on us for lunch every day.”
Two sets of plans have been submitted to the Kentucky Department of Housing, Building and Construction for the renovation project.
The Board asked Clevenger to give them a breakdown of estimated costs for each project, including HVAC, electrical, general construction, and plumbing.
“What will it cost to get into the building at a bare bones minimum,” asked Board member Larry Prichard. “We are not going to sit here and let the whole thing slip by without trying.”
Clevenger expects to have figures for the group next week.
Leeann Akers can be reached at lakers@journal-times or by phone at 474-5101.