JOHNSTOWN - Fulton County supervisors on Tuesday approved a contract with a Gloversville engineering firm to evaluate the first floor of the county's Fort Johnstown Annex for the second phase of a county records-storage project.
The board approved a $2,600 contract with DM Romeyn Civil Engineering Design of Gloversville to conduct the evaluation. Voting "no" were Johnstown 3rd Ward Supervisor Jack Callery, Gloversville 2nd Ward Supervisor Frank Lauria Jr., Caroga Supervisor Ralph Ottuso and Gloversville 4th Ward Supervisor Charles Potter.
The county this year has been doing an ongoing records-storage project on the second floor and now is considering a similar project for the first floor. The county's original 2012 capital budget allocated $100,000 for work on the second floor of the annex building, on East Montgomery Street.
The original project, which began in March, is designed to centralize all county government records in one area. The project involved gutting old 18th-century jail cells to create more storage space. The project has been a joint one between contractor R&B Construction of Amsterdam and the county Highways and Facilities Department.
Supervisors were told Tuesday at their meeting at the County Office Building that about $30,000 remains as a balance from the original capital project for the second floor. County Planning Director James Mraz and the Board of Supervisors' Buildings and Grounds-Highway Committee and Finance Committee proposed consideration of a future project to now convert a portion of the annex's first floor into additional records storage space.
But a structural evaluation of the first floor is necessary before proceeding, officials said.
Callery asked why the Romeyn firm, which was hired for the original records storage project, is being paid an additional $2,600 for more work at the same building.
"Didn't they check the bottom floor then?" Callery asked. "I just think this is a crazy waste of money."
Mayfield Supervisor Rick Argotsinger, chairman of the Buildings and Grounds-Highway Committee, said there are actually old jail cells on the first floor holding up the second floor.
"We have to know if removing half the cells will hold up the second floor," Argotsinger said.
Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at email@example.com.