Hot time in city hall remedied with new A/C

"City hall doesn't have air conditioning," Hillsboro City Administrator Larry Paine said June 17 to Hillsboro City Council.

The unit quit operating and office personnel were having to be creative to keep cool.

The front door of the office was propped open with a book rack, compliments of Hillsboro City Library, to suck in as much of the cool air as possible. Fans in hallways and in other parts of the city building helped to keep employees as comfortable as possible.

There are separate cooling units in the building, with just the office unit breaking down.

With that said, Paine asked the council to approve a bid estimate from Flaming's, Inc. of Marion to replace the air conditioner. At the same time, Paine obtained a bid to replace the 22-year-old furnace with a more efficient model.

The total bid of $11,940 was approved but not before Hillsboro City Councilman Shelby Dirks asked if other bids were sought. Paine explained that Flaming's was the only one in the area that provided service to commercial units.

In other business:

— A telephone system was approved by the council which will replace 10 telephones in city hall and the fire department. The upgrade will give employees the ability to more efficiently transfer calls and use the conference call option.

Paine said the proposal was "scaled back." The original proposal was to include other city departments.

It was determined it would be advisable to make the phone improvements in increments.

The system will be purchased from The Phone Connection for $7,996.

— Two engineering contracts were approved by the council with Bob Privatera of Reiss & Goodness Engineers, Wichita.

One contract was for the construction of improvements Hillsboro Airport, the other for drainage improvements at Oak and D streets.

Both contracts were basically the same with the engineering firm receiving a percentage based on the total construction cost, starting at 16 percent for $30,000 to 7.5 percent for $4-million-plus projects. If the projects are less than $30,000, the fee will be negotiated between the engineer and the city.

— Paine reported that a community-based group is identifying 10 retail companies to be recommended to the council for recruiting through Buxton Consultants.

— A joint meeting with Hillsboro Planning Commission and the council is at 7 p.m. July 17 in the council room.