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Upgrades for County Courthouse and Fairgrounds

New Sidewalk Going in Around Courthouse

New Sidewalk Going in Around Courthouse

With less than a month before the annual Sand and Sage Fair begins, the Prowers County Commissioners are checking with Kirk Powers, Building Operations Supervisor, with final clean up preparations and repairs that are being conducted at the fairgrounds.

Taking a Chip off the Whole Block

Taking a Chip off the Whole Block

“The seats need one more coat of paint and we’re doing handrails, the lights around the grounds…it’ll look a lot better this year than it did the year before. That’s our focus for right now,” he explained.  Scheduled work on the arena will be held off for a few days as there’s a chance of some rain over the weekend and a gymkhana is scheduled for Saturday and after that more dirt will be hauled in and spread around.

The commissioners, with Powers, decided to alter the fairgrounds rental agreement so that only county employees will run the arena equipment following its use and not let it be used by people renting the facilities. Commissioner Cook stated, “Only county employees will drive the tractor from now on.  We have our own way of doing it and if any problem develops, then we’ll only have ourselves as the responsible party.”  Powers agreed, but added that will alter his budget with some unplanned for overtime, but that will be addressed, along with including those new stipulations into the rental agreement for the fairgrounds facilities.

Powers is waiting for some drawings to address water run-off problems from the county annex parking lot onto Cedar Street, “Once we have those, I’ll be able to decide what will be our next steps to keep from flooding the street,” he explained. Commissioner Cook said there are also drainage problems with the new curb and gutter work east of the County Courthouse, “The other morning after the heavy rain, there was a four by eighteen foot puddle people had to try to cross over or wade through to get to the courthouse.”  Powers said the lining from the box across the street was the problem area as the drain water is running uphill and an air pocket is being created in the drain system and until it breaks, there is a water backup.  “You can hear the bubbles come out and then it starts sucking the water down.  It backs up as it goes uphill, but otherwise, once it clears, it drains pretty fast.”

Restoration work on the ceiling in the 3rd floor courtroom is scheduled for the latter part of the month.  The color of paint and textures of the ceiling plaster will have to be matched to replace the parts that have been eroded and falling away by a moisture build-up that occurred about two years ago.  The ventilation problem has been corrected, but the restoration project will have to be done around courtroom proceedings as best as possible.

The commissioners addressed grounds keeping at the radio tower in Carlton. The 460 foot tower may have to be re-guyed which means re-setting concrete blocks into the ground to hold the restraining cables.  The building will get a fresh coat of paint and instead of using weed kill around the base of the building; they’ll just be mowed down.  There was some concern that lack of any vegetation would cause wind to erode the dirt at the base of the outer walls. The commissioners asked that all the contracts for user space along the length of the tower be reviewed, as well as who is responsible for the cost of electricity to power the various communication systems rented to the county for tower space.

By Russ Baldwin

 

Filed Under: City of LamarCountyFeaturedPublic SafetyUtilities

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