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Letter to the Editor: Commissioners Should Seek Other Options For 911 Center

Wednesday, July 1, 2015 @ 12:07 AM

Posted by Scott Seeley

Well, our great commissioners are at it again $38,000.00 for design only of a new 911 center to be built in Paint Township.

Mr. Campbell, since he is supposedly leaving our great county, doesn’t care how much debt he leaves the citizens with. And Mr. Brosius, since he came in second in the primary for votes, figures the residents of Clarion County likes his agenda. Well, we are here to tell you that the commissioners all they want, as quickly as possible, is get a building built so they can have their names on the almighty brass plaque.

Did they do any serious negotiating on the price of the lot in Paint Township or did they just agree to the $10o,000.00 as was asked? Well in their minds, “Hey, it appraised for $106,000.00 so it must have been a great deal.” How about the cost of connecting to the water and sewerage? Not to mention the electric and gas.

So they need an antenna. The assumption is that the current jail, near the location of the propose building lot, has a roof high enough that you can see the tower at Trinity Point.

Oh, and do we have an estimate on moving the equipment? Oh pardon; they are planning on purchasing all new equipment for even more money.

We have been told that Venango Counties 911 center is not in the best of shape, and Forest County doesn’t have their own 911 center. Maybe it would be prudent to join forces with these two neighboring counties and build one central center. Clarion currently covers Yi of Forest and we believe Venango covers the balance.

We have also been told that a 911 center can’t be handled out of the county by the powers that be. Guess it’s magic that Forest County can be covered today.

What about the old hospital, there is a lot of empty space there that could be used? Also, has anyone looked into the Verizon building
located at the corner of Fifth and Liberty streets? From what we have been told, it is mostly empty, and basically everything is there, or close to being there, and it’s secure.

Speaking of secure, it was suggested to the commissioners that maybe a modular building would work. They said it wouldn’t be secure enough. Modular construction can be as secure building as can be built. There have been built
airport terminal buildings, banks, doctor’s offices and a domestic relations office that had bullet proof glass and steel in the lobby walls. There are also a couple of major savings utilizing modular construction, first the engineering is done in house with very little cost, no architects or engineers needed; second it can be built without using a prevailing wage scale.

It is understood the county was offered a lot in Trinity Point right next to the tower, and would maybe eliminate the need for an additional tower for additional savings.

Also, there is as another option space that could be rented at the old Bi-Lo Building along with empty space the county currently owns.

Let’s not forget the old jail building where the current 911 center is located. By their own admission, the current commissioners have not done any real preventative maintenance on the jail since taking office. There is no doubt that a professional mold remediation company could eliminate the mold problem that they say exists. When visiting the old jail building there was one dehumidifier located in the basement setting on a shelf not being used. There is not a home out there that without some sort of dehumidifier, a mold problem wouldn’t exist. The ceiling in the main entry is coming down because of the pigeons getting into the tower. For $50.00 you could install chicken wire and keep them out.

It was also stated by one of the current commissioners that the letter from the insurance company about dropping the insurance coverage was a recommendation letter only. Anyone that has an existing business receives these type recommendations letters all the time by insurance inspectors.

The Concerned Citizens of Clarion County are totally against the new building the commissioners are currently proposing. They, the current commissioners, have already wasted somewhere around $500,000.00 on an annex with nothing to show for it. How· can we, as citizens of Clarion County, assume they can do any better than they’ve already done? There are too many other options to look at. But, in the end, these guys wouldn’t have their names on the brass plaque.

You can bet this isn’t the end of the spending, as there is still a need for a new court room. Just how much of your hard earned tax money are these guys willing to waste?

It is time the citizens of Clarion County find out just exactly what this project is going to cost the citizens of Clarion County. As with any building project an overall budget needs to be prepared. They are just spoon feeding the residents’ small amounts so that no one really gets what the total costs are expected to be. As with the Annex project they did all their planning at under the cover of certain meetings so the residents were not aware what was going on. Is this the way with this project and future projects are going to handled?

Before the fall election, the citizens of our great Clarion County must really decide “Do we want any of these three commissioners controlling our purse strings?”

Submitted by: Concerned Citizens of Clarion County

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of exploreClarion.com.

To submit a letter to the editor, email news@exploreClarion.com.

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