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Telecommunications holds up completion of Expo Center


Last updated 11/28/2012 at Noon

There may be a slight delay on the completion of the Orange County Convention and Expo Center.

“Our engineers are still trying to get out the additional projects that we had and we’ve got the grant money to spend on it.

One of the key ones we’ve been holding the contractor up a little bit on is the telecommunications,” said Maintenance Director Mark Wimberly.

Wiring and switches has not been run for the communications system.

“I can’t see letting them put the ceiling in without that wire being in place,” said Wimberly.

Commissioners agreed.

Wimberly said G and G Enterprises will be asking for a few extra days.

He sees completion in early January.

Wimberly informed commissioners’ court of the delay while addressing a change order in the building.

The changes will be a cost of $6,166.06 to the county, but is still well within the contingency fund set aside for the project.

The most important change is additional studs in the half walls inside the building. Contractors did not feel the wall was sturdy enough without the additional bracing.

“They didn’t like the way those walls and half walls weren’t steady enough and they added some additional tees and crosses to secure them up. It’s just reinforcement basically,” said Wimberly.

There was also a change in the type of toilet tissue holders in the bathrooms. “What was in the specifications really will not work with what we use for toilet paper,” said Wimberly. “It was the coreless type of dispensers and Mark Matheson specified them and nobody caught it until we actually did the adult probation job. Then they caught it.”

Even though the cost is going up slightly, it will still save money by not requiring the county to buy two different types of toilet paper.

The interior door to the equipment room has to be enlarged from three feet to four feet wide to allow for the possible future replacement of equipment installed in the building that will not fit through the openings as planned.

Exterior lighting was wired as all on or all off. “We have an abundance of it, I felt like and what I asked them to do was alternate, put it on two switches, so I can basically cut 50 percent of it off,” said Wimberly. He felt that would save on electricity when full lighting wasn’t necessary.

Also, they will be adding mini blinds to walls that are made of glass to afford privacy when needed at a cost of $1,800, which is part of the $6,166.06.

In other business, Ben Love and Kevin Rainey from Enterprise Liquids Pipeline LLC came before commissioners seeking permission to survey the southeastern boundary of the Orange County Municipal Airport for a possible future pipeline in that area.

They don’t anticipate having to go on the property for the survey or the possible pipeline, but won’t know for sure until the survey is done. It will not interfere with the operation of the airport.

Commissioners approved the measure and Assistant District Attorney Doug Manning will execute the county’s right of entry form.

Judge Carl Thibodeaux was authorized to sign a contract with Carroll & Blackman, Inc. for scientific services in connection with the Texas Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Phase II MS4 Permit, which pertains to storm water.

Rick Masters of Carroll & Blackman, Inc. told commissioners costs were going up because of new regulations by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ).

Now, project contractors must be brought to all inspections, where before, they were only needed on site in remediation situations.

They are now also required to inspect places such as public libraries and swimming pools, which never used to be required.

To help with costs, Masters said they have added more members to the coalition which now totals nine and previously was only three.

Each member’s share this year is $12,835.33 which is up, but he said next year it should drop to $11,276 which is closer to what the county was previously paying.

The increase is to cover the new requirements by the state.


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