For over an hour and a half, the Cedar County Ambulance Board and members of the public discussed the new ambulance barn the board now wants to build on the lot just to the west of the current ambulance barn in Stockton. The board said it has reserved $25,000 to purchase the lot but would not reveal the purchase price from Wanda Cassell because the deal has not been consummated.
Chillicothe based Ken Mata, Morton Buildings, was again present to assure the board that he will do the architectural work at no charge to the district. He only asks to be one of the bidders.
Board members present were Kenny Turner, Byron Hamilton, Keith Kosco, John Wilson (presiding) and Charlotte Haden who had to leave the meeting after about an hour.
At an earlier meeting the board set the budget for the new ambulance barn at $835,000.
The board voted to support a bill by State Rep. Lowe.
The ambulance staff said it has only used the heli-pad eight times in four years. They think the Stockton airport is safer.
CPA Kalena Kenney, delivered the Feb. 28, financial report: total checking and savings – $766,590, total assets – $1,969,936, net ordinary income – $25,823, board compensation – $350.
While the board looked over the minutes from previous meeting, Byron Hamilton objected to the way the March 2 minutes presented the construction cost estimates. After discussion, Wilson agreed to change the minutes.
Hamilton said, “We didn’t really call a public meeting. We called a special meeting. We didn’t really inform the public of what was being discussed.”
“The finance figures here, we didn’t really discuss this. We discussed that we we would call a public meeting.”
Board secretary Tami Ringler said, “It was a public meeting.”
Hamilton said I don’t remember it being in the paper to advertise to the public.
Wilson said, “That was in the paper and it was public.”
Hamilton said, “I’m not sure it went into detail of what was going to be discussed.”
Wilson said, “These were just ideas and suggestions. I don’t want the figures used as what we are going to spend on the building.”
Hamilton said, “When you put examples in black and white, sometimes they become the rule of law which they shouldn’t be. Now you are calling them samples. I want it noted they are just examples.”
“I make my living building and there’s no way I want to spend this kind of money on that building.”
Wilson made a change in the Marsh 2 minutes to say figures were handed out as an example. Hamilton agreed that was OK.
“We have that the overall budget is $835,000. We haven’t seen anything to establish a budget for. And just because the money is there doesn’t mean we have to spend it.”
Hamilton said we need to establish where this building is going to be. Wilson said he thought they did at the last meeting – sort of a 45 degree angle to the existing building so the ambulances could drive in at an angle and drive out without backing up.
The board has set a special meeting for 6 p.m. Monday, March 27, to discuss the possibility of developing plans and written specifications and purchase the real estate. The public is invited to tour the existing building and take part in the meeting. Part of the meeting will be closed session involving the purchase of real estate and developing bid specs.