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Proposed repair bill for Zephyrhills fire station under $1-million

ZEPHYRHILLS — City staff members returned from the drawing board with new, and less expensive, renovation plans for Fire Station 2.

City fire chief Keith Williams presented a $716,251 proposal to the City Council on Monday night.

At a previous meeting, the council decided that two $1-million-plus plans to rehab the 1960s-era building were too costly. In the new plans, staff members were able to save money by minimizing the building's office space and eliminating unnecessary roof repairs.

"We went through basically line by line of the proposal that was given to us before," Williams said.

Fire Station 2 was ruined Jan. 23 when an early morning deluge flooded the building. The station is in a flood-prone area near City Hall, which also was flooded the night of the storm. Fire officials didn't have enough warning to protect the building with sandbags, their usual storm protocol.

Since the storm, city firefighters have worked out of temporary facilities in the Zephyrhills World War II Barracks Museum. There is also another station on Dairy Road.

The plans presented Monday night were incomplete. The $716,251 plan did not include office or kitchen furniture. The city is also conducting tests on the building to see if asbestos is present, which could drive up the cost.

"This is one piece of the puzzle," Williams said.

If eventually approved, the renovations would be funded with local option sales tax money and the fire rescue portion of the public safety impact fee revenue account.

Council members praised city staff's efforts to reduce the costs.

In other news:

Council member Manny Funes, elected to the position earlier this month, gave away about $1,000 of what he said was leftover campaign money to Meals on Wheels, the Zephyrhills Chamber of Commerce and a local rotary club at Monday's meeting.

Helen Anne Travis can be reached at htravis@sptimes.com.

Proposed repair bill for Zephyrhills fire station under $1-million 11/24/08 [Last modified: Monday, November 24, 2008 9:00pm]
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