Costly Swimming Pool Repairs Considered by Lamar City Council

Lamar Municipal Pool

Lamar Municipal Pool

The Lamar City Council  discussed a proposal to hire a consulting firm to determine what has caused pieces of the pool’s finish lining to peel off, sometimes by as much as two foot strips. The Lamar Municipal Swimming Pool was resurfaced in 2013 by Pacific Western Coatings, but the results on the finish have not been satisfactory with the city as the materials continue to peel or bubble up in sections. The council considered a consulting firm, Water Technology from Oklahoma City, to make recommendations on how to fix the problem, but at a $10,400 fee. That’s when the discussion started. Council members Bev Haggard and Kirk Crespin wanted to know what the city was going to get for that large a price tag. Crespin said he wasn’t happy if Pacific Western was getting off the hook on their work and inquired if there was any legal recourse that could be taken before authorizing $10,000 on a study. Akers explained that the city selected a coating called Diamond Bright which was rated third on the available market. “We couldn’t begin to afford the top two,” he told the council, adding that the life expectancy of the current surfacing was from 15 to 20 years. The council approved the study contingent on attorney Garth Nieschburg’s review of the contract with Pacific Western Coatings to see what recourse was available to the city. If there was a lawsuit, the study by Water Technology could be used to substantiate a legal claim for the repair costs.

Seasonal Maintenance on Lamar Pool

Seasonal Maintenance on Lamar Pool

Lamar Fire Chief Jeremy Burkhart described the need for an upgraded software program for his department. Burkhart stated that the current system which was put in to use in 2002 has a host of problems which requires constant fixes and is no longer compatible with newer programs. The new software package will allow the completion of fire reports which must be submitted to the state and federal authorities. “We’re at the point where we have to reboot the computer just to print these out when they are needed,” he explained.  These reports are required to qualify the department to receive state and national grants. The new program, which was approved by the council at a cost of $15,050, will allow the tracking of inventory and maintenance on the fire trucks, firefighter training records, fire hydrant information, inspections and other details inherent with the fire department. The software also includes integration with Eforce to facilitate the transfer of information on calls.

Police Chief Kyle Miller requested approval to buy two 2015 Ford Explorer 4-door vehicles which was approved by the council after some discussion with Mayor Roger Stagner about the need for a total of eight four-wheel vehicles for the department. Stagner wanted to make sure the cost was justified by the need, or if any less expensive vehicles were available. Valley National Bank offered a five year lease/purchase agreement at 2.79% with an annual payment of $12,219.  The cost of the two new vehicles is $56,292. Chief Miller explained the need for the new units saying that one vehicle used by the K9 Patrol sees limited service because of earlier hail damage. “We really aren’t getting the best use of our patrol dog at this point using a vehicle that isn’t equipped to transport them.” He said the recent rains also stalled three sedans because they couldn’t navigate the deep waters on their patrol routes. And he detailed one instance in which the police had to respond on foot to a domestic violence situation during a recent winter when the snows were too high to drive to the scene in a patrol sedan.

The city purchased a replacement utility tractor with money from the Fairmount Investment Fund. The city has spent $8,000 at John Deere/4 Rivers on a 15 year old mower which still isn’t working properly. Akers said 4 Rivers waived all repair costs and allowed a $5,000 trade-in for a new mower which has been in service with no problems.

The council approved a new three year contract, switching to PRI from CenturyLink for T-1 service which had cost $815 a month for 24 channels for phone service. Thomas Sanchez, City IT Manager, said this will save the city money and will provide extra enhancements such as caller ID. The city will save around $2,600 a year on the contract. He said the $375 installation fee will also be waived. A contract addendum will be reviewed for compliance with Tabor requirements by City Attorney Garth Nieschburg.

By Russ Baldwin

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