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The Wheeler Hall of Justice will soon have air conditioning again.
Carroll County Fiscal Court voted Tuesday, March 12 to approve a $9,350 bid from TC Mechanical Services in Frankfort to make repairs to the existing heating and cooling unit at the courthouse located at 802 Clay St.
Judge-Executive Harold “Shorty” Tomlinson said the contractor will replace the compressor, which is still under warranty, and replace other parts on the unit that is 20 years old. This will ensure that the HVAC system is running properly and will protect the new compressor from damage, he said.
The county had asked the state’s Administrative Office of the Courts to replace the system. However, the request was turned down, Tomlinson said, because of the state’s budget shortfalls. He said AOC said it couldn’t pay to replace the unit because it is “$30 million in the hole.”
When AOC pays for a project, Tomlinson said, they fund 97 percent of the cost, leaving only 3 percent to the county.
The county sought bids for replacing the HVAC system, but they came in at $34,248 for TC Mechanical and $39,168 for DeBra-Kuempel of Louisville.
Tomlinson said fixing the existing system will resolve problems at the hall of justice sooner than replacing it.
Last week, he said, the grand jury was meeting and had to change rooms to where they could open windows because it was a warm day and the air conditioning has failed.
“I got my shots from them over there,” he said.
Making repairs also makes sense because the compressor on the HVA system is still under warranty.
By taking this option, magistrates agreed that this would save the county about $25,000.
Courthouse project update
Several projects continue to progress around the Carroll County courthouse. Judge-Executive Harold “Shorty” Tomlinson briefly updated fiscal court on the work at the Tuesday, March 12 meeting.
Tomlinson said renovations are underway in the clerk’s office with the new counter set and painting underway. Outside the building, the new sidewalks were to be poured by the week’s end. Electrical work and setting the sign on the lawn are the next jobs contractors will tackle, he said. Ground lighting work can begin as the contractor is ready for this work, but it will likely be mid-April before the new street lighting arrives and is ready for installation.
Park-to-Park Trails grant
Carroll County hopes to salvage a project to link General Butler State Resort Park to Robert Westrick Park by trails.
Tomlinson told magistrates he had a meeting last week where he hoped to work out a way to be able to use the $65,000 grant the county was awarded for this project in 2009.
“I take responsibility with where we are at with this,” he said.
Tomlinson said they are looking at alternatives that would not require linking the trails through the area near Lock No. 1 where bank erosion along the Kentucky River is a problem. That erosion, which closed the road that would extend to Jay Louden Road, continues to slide into the river.
At one time, he said, they were considering a bridge across the slide area. That $100,000 plan would not have worked because of the continued erosion in that area, he said.
“If we can do it we will do it. If we can’t, we won’t,” Tomlinson said.
Tomlinson declared April 5 as Arbor Day in Carroll County by proclamation March 12. In the document he signed, Tomlinson said citizens should participate by planting trees to beautify Kentucky and focus attention on the state’s forests.