Pine floors uncovered in renovations

Architect Carl Nobles updated the Board of Supervisors on the courthouse renovation project during Monday’s regular monthly session.

The tiles have been pulled up,  revealing nice pine flooring, Nobles reported. The board authorized a change order adding $6,700 expense to the project for the restoration of the wood floor.

This was an unexpected find which drew enthusiasm from the Department of Archives and History as well as county officials. The floors will require some repairs but should add a great deal to the historic character of the upstairs renovations, Nobles told the board.  

The board questioned whether the pine flooring may also be found under the downstairs tiles, but no one is sure. The architect said the original plans indicate there is a stone floor downstairs. County officials hope to obtain a grant sometime in the future to complete the courthouse renovation on the ground floor.

The Department of Archives and History has informed the county that the windows in the renovation project must be single-paned wood windows. They will require more maintenance and be less energy efficient than the windows the architect chose for the project, but as the courthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places and the renovations are being funded with grants from the Department of Archives and History, the county must follow their guidelines.

The board accepted the change orders relating to the floors and the windows, and also authorized the first payment of $155,383 to the contractor, which includes some up front costs, asbestos abatement and demolition. Pre-painting work has been completed as well as pipe and electrical demolition.

HEALTH PROGRAM

The board met with Florida White and Ms. Carter of the Mississippi Strategic Health Initiative for Network Improvement, a federal health initiative which includes Copiah County.

The program promotes positive healthy initiatives in the community to address issues such as substance abuse, teen sexuality, community wellness, and access to pharmacy care.

The board was asked to be part of the partners board and provide support and time, but the county was not asked for financial support. The program is funded by a grant, White explained, and works as a partner with local organizations so that if the grant funds are not renewed in the future the program can continue.

Carter’s office is in Port Gibson while White is located in Jefferson County. They plan to open an office in Copiah County to service the program weekly.

OTHER BUSINESS

Kay Hall was promoted from jailer to assistant jail administrator.

The contract with One Johnson Place was extended for one month to provide jail meals.

The board discussed litigation and personnel in executive session for about an hour but no action was taken.

A public hearing on property cleanup at 1007 Damascus Circle was postponed until Monday, March 10, at 10 a.m. The board has received complaints about the property and planned the hearing to determine if the situation constitutes a menace to public health and safety.

Paperwork was approved to apply for matching funds from the state in the Rural Fire Truck Acquisition Program for Bethel, Hopewell, and Georgetown.

Engineer Joe Johnson reported that the gravel shoulders on the Beauregard Road project will be finished up this week. The 2008 overlay plans have been submitted to State Aid for review.

The county has been instructed by the auditors to deal with about $415,000 in delinquent garbage accounts. A few of the accounts have been deleted as vacant addresses that have not received service since 2005 (mainly addresses that have been assigned to lots where houses have not yet been built). But the remaining accounts with delinquent balances need stiffened collections procedures, advised county administrator Ronnie Barlow.

The board discussed the renewal of commercial drivers licenses for county road employees before recessing until Monday, March 10, at 9 a.m.

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