For anyone planning to visit the Upson County Animal Shelter, there soon will be more room to interact with prospective pets before adopting the newest member of your family. The Board of Commissioners approved the purchase of a modular building, from T&R Custom Incorporated, to be used for the administrative offices at the animal shelter. The vote came at a called work session last week to discuss SPLOST projects.
According to Public Buildings Director Paul Rogers, Smart Web, Director of Upson County Animal Control, was involved in the design process for the building so that it would be specific to the needs of the shelter. The building will be equipped with office space, air conditioning, plumbing and a bathroom. Once it arrives at the shelter, it will only need to be connected to existing utilities and have a handicap ramp built onto the structure to be fully functional. The funding for this project, which totals a little over $27,000, comes from the 2011 SPLOST money designated for the animal shelter.
Commissioner Steve Hudson also updated the board about Sprewell Bluff during the meeting. Hudson stated that they are currently enquiring about insurance costs to the county for taking over operations of the recreation area. While they haven’t received an official quote yet, the numbers being thrown around are higher than what the county could reasonably afford.
“We want to take over operations because if not, I fear the park will be shut down and become an eyesore. However, we cannot do it at the expense of the tax payers,” said Hudson.
The nearly 1,600 acres of hunting land at the recreation area is contributing to the high cost for insurance. County Attorney Ed Trice noted that there is an insurance policy through Georgia Forestry that may help with lower rates for the county. County Manager Kyle Hood said they had been previously using BB&T, who serves as the county’s insurance broker, but that they would look into it. Hudson also suggested to the board that if a feasible policy cannot be found, they may want to discuss the possibility of taking over the recreation area without the hunting land with the Department of Natural Resources so they could do what they had planned.
In other business, the board approved a bid of $126,782.25 with Robinson Paving of Columbus to resurface a portion of Jeff Davis Road. The road was chosen by the state to resurface as part of the LARP because there was additional money available, however it will not cover the entire road. The state will be responsible from White Road to just before Firetower Road and Hood noted the rest of the road to Highway 74 would be up to the county and that it makes sense to finish the road at the same time. Robinson Paving was the low bidder and is also doing the work for the state. Jeff Davis was one of the roads patched in the 2005 SPLOST and the money for the resurfacing will come from the 2011 SPLOST.
Hood also gave an update on the Bethel Street football fields, in which several bids are out for the lighting, irrigation, sod laying and electric and mechanical work. The rough grading and clearing bids have recently been approved and the project is moving along nicely.
The final order of business during the work session was the approval of a bid with Quality Builders of Zebulon for the rough grading of the T-ball fields at the Civic Center for $21,977.00; the grading should begin sometime this week.