The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

April 27, 2013

Ashtabula County commissioners to pay Smolen Engineering for work related to ACDJFS expansion

Star Beacon

JEFFERSON — The county will pay Smolen Engineering up to $182,000 for architectural engineering and bidding services related to the expansion of the Ashtabula County Department of Job and Family Services building at Donahoe Center.

The board approved the agreement with Smolen during the agenda  meeting on Thursday. The department will foot the bill for the engineering work as well as construction. The expansion project will allow the department to consolidate all of its operations except Job Source into one location.

Commissioners and several other elected officials traveled to New York City earlier this week to make a presentation to the bond rating agency Standard & Poor. The county is seeking a bond rating so it can consolidate a number of obligations, including the debt for the ACDJFS expansion and at least one of the two lodge loans, into one bond. The move could save the county up to $3 million in interest over the next decade.

County Administrator Janet Discher told the board Thursday that Tuesday’s agenda will be stuffed with resolutions relating to the board’s work on consolidating the debt. The rating will determine the interest rate, and consequently the amount of savings, the county will be able to obtain in the market.

In other action Thursday, the board:

• Approved a contract with Newcomer Concrete Services and the City of Geneva for North Broadway Improvements. The $162,748.50 project will receive $103,400 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds. The balance is coming from the city. The project is the third phase of the city’s North Broadway Streetscape improvements.

• Approved another CDBG project contract — the re-roofing and ventilation improvements to the Andover Public Library. Senita Roofing & Insulation of Ashtabula was awarded the contract of $74,338.50. Of that, $40,000 will come from CDBG funds.

• Adopted the Coastal Management Plan developed by Poggenmeyer Design Group for the county. The county planning commission accepted the plan April 15 and recommended it to the board.

• Accepted the resignation of Scott Robinson from the Ashtabula County Board of Building Appeals. Robinson notified the board that he is selling his business, Apple Heating and Cooling, and no longer wanted to be on the board.

• Appointed Rosemary Mead to the Ashtabula County Senior Services Levy Advisory Board. Mead will serve out the balance of a three-year term that expires Dec. 31, 2013.

• Approved a contract with Respiratory Care Partners for supplies at the Ashtabula County Nursing Home. The contract, for $35,000, was previously tabled by the board as the members wanted to make sure local vendors were had been considered by the home’s administration. The provider is from Warren.

• During a work session prior to the agenda meeting, commissioners learned that the sale of nursing home beds is to close May 15. Commissioners last year put up for sale excess certificates of need for beds at the county-owned home.

The county sold 147 beds to Otterbein Homes of Lebanon, Ohio, at $18,200 each, for a total sale of $2.6 million. The money must remain in the nursing home fund and will not be a “windfall” for the county.