Could the township building be renovated to continue meeting the needs of Mahoning Township supervisors was the question that led to a 4-0 vote to have their engineer inspect the structure and determine if it is a feasible idea during Monday evening's board meeting.
"We need to do something (about our building situation). We owe it to the employees who have to work here to do something with our building," said supervisor Travis Steigerwalt, referring to some long-standing issues that make the current building inadequate including lack of room for meeting space, moving the police department downstairs to make it more accessible and dealing with the fumes from the road crew's machinery, which shares the space in the building.
Township Chairman John Wieczorek mentioned he and supervisor Frank Ruch met with the township's engineer prior to a recent convention and they discussed how to move forward with erecting a pole barn for the road crew to move them out of the main building.
Wieczorek admitted that his experience with such building projects in his private career was quite a bit more direct and he found all of the concerns that one has to address as a municipality challenging in a project like this.
"At one point, Frank and I met with the township's engineer and building inspector Carl Faust to discuss a quote from Costars on a building with the idea that we would put the shell up and complete the interior ourselves, but Tim told us that creates a complication," he said.
Wieczorek explained that only erecting a shell and doing the interior work in pieces later could constitute piecing out the project, which is illegal for a borough or municipality to do as it could affect the original bidding process.
Steigerwalt mentioned at that point in the conversation that until the board decided what to do with the original building and the employees in it, he would not support building a pole barn.
He mentioned that last year the building fund did not receive an allocation and he did not want this initiative to be forgotten.
"We have been discussing this for years and I think it's time to do something about it, either building a new building or renovating this one."
Road Crew supervisor Ron Reeser agreed that something should be done to take care of the building's problems but added that the first step would need to be erecting a pole barn to move the road crew out of the main building in order to provide room for any type of renovation.
Once Reeser pointed that out Steigerwalt seemed to agree and indicated that would be a reason he could support the pole barn construction as long as the main building would also be part of the overall plan.
Steigerwalt and supervisor George Stawnyczyj moved to have the engineer come and inspect the existing building to determine if it was feasible to renovate as well as to meet with the police chief and road crew supervisor to understand their needs.
The motion carried 4-0 with only supervisor Frank Ruch absent from the meeting.