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Looking for more office space

By Staff | May 24, 2015

This south end of the Ag Center is where the County Board is looking at as a possible site to move some of its offices to. The area under consideration housed a medical clinic.

After a work session with I&S Group (ISG) last month, the County Board wanted to look into the feasibility of utilizing the Ag Center for some of their offices.

Last week Dawn Fellows, central services director, received the results from ISG’s assessment of the Ag Center and shared them with the Faribault County Commissioners during their meeting last Tuesday.

“This would be the alternative to using the Minnesota Valley Action Council (MVAC) building,”?Fellows explained.

At their previous work session, they looked at moving some offices from the county’s annex building into the MVAC?building located on Main Street in Blue Earth. However, at that time MVAC didn’t feel like they would be able to make that happen financially.

“This looks to be a much more reasonable financial update than the MVAC?assesment,” commissioner Bill Groskreutz said.

The waiting room area in the former clinic at the Ag Center.

The assessment showed that some of the hollow doors would have to be changed to solid doors, wall heights may need to be extended in some areas, some ceiling work may have to be done. However, the existing walls would work for the needs of the offices.

“The floor plan shows each has as much if not more space,”?Fellows added, comparing the Ag Center to the current office space.

The feasibility study showed a variety of work which could be done at the various sites including the courthouse, the annex building, the old jail.

“I feel the need for another work session,” county auditor/ treasurer/coordinator John Thompson said. “We need to go over this information and make our own spreadsheets. This isn’t going to fly at their costs.”

The scope of work included updates, repairs, security updates and much more. However, the County Board feels it would be a good idea to sort through the information and pin down what they need to do.

“The scope of work was kind of enlarged in this assessment,” Thompson added.

A meeting for the building and grounds committee was scheduled for May 29 and a work session for the full board was scheduled for June 12 at 11 a.m.

“We should sit down and hammer this thing out to see what we really need, but I want to get going on this,” commissioner Tom Warmka said.

Fellows told the commissioners she was applying for a grant in regard to the updates at the courthouse and other county buildings.

“I have applied for a Minnesota Historical Society Capital Grant,”?she said. “The roof and tower work on the courthouse would more than qualify for this.”

She informed the board members that the smallest amount for the grant is $10,000 and the largest amount would be $385,000.

The pre-application deadline was May 29 and the final application deadline is July 17.

“This gives us a little extra time to further assess that portion of the work,”?Fellows added.