Boone County Government Center renovation approved

Thursday, July 1, 2010 | 3:22 p.m. CDT; updated 3:31 p.m. CDT, Thursday, July 1, 2010

COLUMBIA — Recycling should play a large role in the remodeling of the Boone County Government Center.

"We're trying to reuse as much material in this building as we can," Presiding Commissioner Ken Pearson said. "If they move a door frame, we want to reuse that if possible."

The recycling effort is a part of a $3.9 million renovation of the center and the old Johnston paint company building approved during the commission's Tuesday meeting.

GBH Builders, of Jefferson City, received the contract for the work with a $2.3 million bid, which was the lowest total offer. The work will prepare the center's empty third floor for use and will shuffle around several office locations.

The Human Resources, Purchasing, and Facilities Maintenance departments will move from the two-story Johnson building at 601 E. Walnut to the renovated Johnston paint building at 613 Ash Street. The county counselor will also move from the Johnson building to the government center.

After these departments move, the public defenders, who now occupy to the first floor and part of the second floor of the Johnson building, can expand to the second.

At the government center, the auditor and commission offices are moving from the second to the third floor. The Planning and Inspection Department, along with the storm water staff and the design and construction staff will relocate to the third floor. These three groups will work together as the new Resource Management Department.

The offices are now about eight miles apart, making it harder to work together on some issues.

"It'll put all the professional staff together, so it'll be easier for a developer or member of the public to get their question on drainage, or any other issue, answered in one spot," said Stan Shawver, Planning and Building director.

He said about 30 people will work in the office.

The money for this project is coming from three sources, Auditor June Pitchford said. The first source, equaling $900,000, comes from the remainder of a 2003 bond fund. This money was intended for the third floor remodel and the county has set it aside since then.

About $1 million is coming from the fifth-cent capital improvement sales tax voters approved in 2006. The tax ended in October 2009 and raised $14 million total. The final funding comes from one-time sources set aside by the county over a span of about 15 years, she said.

The construction contract states all work must be complete by May 20, 2011.

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