Commission revisits Health Dept. decision

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The Marshall County Commission handled their current business in under 12 minutes at their monthly meeting on Monday.

However, they reopened an issue that has been discussed for over two years, and had seemed to be settled.

The commission’s building committee will meet next week to further discuss plans for the Marshall County Health Department building.

Chair of the County Commission Mike Waggoner, who is also a member of the building committee, announced a meeting of the committee on Sept.6 at the Health Department building in order to walk through the building to examine it for themselves.

“We want to weigh our options a little better,” said Waggoner. “Maybe we can make a wiser or a more straight forward, better decision with everyone’s input.”

A decision on the building seemed to have already been made, however.

The commission voted unanimously at their May 22 meeting to approve funds for both the engineering and project management fees and for the construction of a new building for the Health Department.

Plans have been developed by architect James Kennon over the last couple of years for a new building to be built next to the existing building on Legion Avenue in Lewisburg.

After construction, the old building site would be converted to a parking lot for the new building.

The condition of the Health Department building has been an issue for years.

On April 29, 2015, the Tribune ran an article covering a building committee meeting where the problems with the building were discussed.

Problems with the foundation, the electrical system, issues with mold, and over-crowding were all noted in the article, as well as the building not being compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines for access.

On May 6, 2015, another article ran after another committee meeting when options for the building were presented.

Kennon, according to the article, presented the committee with a figure between $1 million and $1.3 million to renovate the existing building. To build an entirely new structure, he estimated costs between $1.2 and $1.4 million.

That $1.4 million cost was the figure approved by the commission this past May.

At some point after that meeting, planning began to build new, instead of trying to renovate the existing structure.