(Posted Dec. 22, 2016)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
Another public entity is working with the Madison County Future Community Improvement Corp. (CIC) to save labor costs on a building project.
The Madison County Board of Developmental Disabilities (MCBDD) plans to expand its bus garage to add a lift for vehicle maintenance work.
Earlier this year, the board put the project out for public bid. As a public entity, they must meet prevailing wage standards for such projects. When the bids came in far over the project’s estimated cost, the board looked for other options.
They decided to turn the project over to the CIC which, as a 501(c)3 non-profit, is not required to meet prevailing wage.
Prevailing wage, set by the Department of Labor & Industries, is the hourly wage, benefits and overtime paid in the largest city in each county to workers, laborers and mechanics performing public work.
The CIC will take temporary ownership of the portion of MCBDD’s property set aside for the garage expansion. The CIC will then seek bids from contractors and oversee the construction project. At completion, the CIC will return ownership to MCBDD, charging the board a fee of 3 percent of the project cost in a lease-to-purchase agreement drawn up by the county prosecutor.
“We did the same thing with the buildings at the fairgrounds and the Somerford Township building,” said David Kell, executive director of the CIC.
The CIC worked with the Madison County senior fair board on the construction of the new youth arena, community center and hog barn at the fairgrounds in London. The CIC also is working with the Somerford Township trustees on their new building, now in progress on State Route 56 in London. All of these projects involved CIC lease-to-purchase agreements.
Details are being worked out for the MCBDD bus garage project. A new estimated cost is not yet available, said Susan Thompson, board superinten-dent, adding that she expects the bid process to start early next year.
MCBDD’s current bus garage is not tall enough to accommodate a lift and, as such, all maintenance work is done on the ground. The 35×40-foot expansion will have the height needed for a lift to get vehicles off the ground, making for easier maintenance work.
“It will allow us to be a little more proactive in the maintenance of our fleet,” Thompson said.
MCBDD maintains a fleet of over 40 vehicles, from minivans to a 72-passenger bus, which they use for various transportation needs, including Madison County Ride, a service available to anyone in the county who needs a ride, whether or not they have a disability. The board also provides transportation services through contracts with the Madison County Veterans Affairs Office, Madison County Department of Job and Family Services, Farm Science Review and local school districts. The board’s fleet logs over 1 million miles a year.