Mt. Vernon Register-News

February 4, 2013

M360 to begin courthouse feasibility study

By RORYE O’CONNOR
rorye.oconnor@register-news.com

MT. VERNON — — Within the next three months, the county should know what needs to be repaired at the Jefferson County Courthouse.

Jefferson County Board Chairman Robert White signed a letter of intent to move forward with M360 on Thursday, authorizing the energy consultant company to begin its feasibility study of the courthouse’s needs.  

“They will report back in 90 days with their findings, what needs to be done and the estimated cost,” White said. “They will be crawling all over the place. They are hoping to have a floor plan by the next Public Safety Committee meeting.

Representatives from M360 will provide monthly updates to the County Board about how the study is going, White said. After the feasibility study is completed, the county is expected to go into contract negotiations concerning the construction or renovations, with implementation of the plan beginning two weeks after that.

M360’s anticipated completion date for the entire project is July 2014, White said.  

The county is not required to perform any of the suggested upgrades to the courthouse, but M360 is to be compensated for the feasibility study either way, he said.

“(The plan) is the whole point of this,” White said. “One of the big hangups people had is if we don’t do anything, we are still charged $25,000. But this allows us to get a game plan and know exactly what the problems are. We are going to know every intimate detail about the courthouse when they get done.”

White said based on what the county already knows about the courthouse’s myriad issues, from roof leaks to boiler efficiency problems, it is unlikely that the county board will vote to make no repairs whatsoever.

He said he was looking forward to the results of the study, because nothing like it has been done in the courthouse’s history.