Sunday, August 16, 2015

Council Chambers Remodel

I'm going to keep this short, maybe not so sweet.  The Dispatch has info on their website and you can read it by going here

The only part of the council chamber remodel that I can see as a needed item is the upgrade of the A/V system, for various reasons including future video streaming, and the ability for members of the public to be able to see documents better.  To me, the majority of the rest of the items are fluff.

Yours truly got up and mentioned that the bid by SKC for the A/V was based on a State of Kansas contract but that did not necessarily mean that it was the lowest possible price.  There are companies that can provide services/products to the state at prices lower than the contract prices and as such can get state business.  Ironically, a representative from SKC was there (and if I heard correctly he lives in Shawnee) and he even said that their portion could have probably been bid by others at 10%-15% less (you figure that out on approximately $63K).  But then he went on to say we could get hit with change orders...........hmmmm even if we keep to the philosophy of guaranteed maximum price.

Now, some council members wanted to be able to do an a la carte remodel.  Pick some items and eliminate others.  Here is the rub.  We would have had to get a new set of plans/drawings because the drawings/plans became proprietary to Turner even though we paid $23K for them.  This was because the contract was one of these "design/build" items.  Going forward rest assured I will voice opposition to any design/build projects unless we get ownership of the plans/drawings.  Our council needs to be able to select elements of projects without an all or nothing option as the only option.

The biggest voice (literally) for doing this project, so we can look nice was Jeff "The Arrogant One" Vaught.  The same arrogant, anti open government fool who has repeatedly spoken against elections to fill open council seats that occur in other than normal circumstances.  He doesn't want to spend money on letting the people choose their representatives, but he is willing to spend money on new chairs, carpeting and a ridiculous conference room that will cost a small fortune to finish (it is only going to be roughed in now),