At its meeting Friday, July 27, the Board of Selectmen approved two requests from the Department of Public Works that will advance the town hall renovation project.

Public Works will enter into a contract with Pat Munger Construction Company to renovate the temporary office space at Stewart's Office Building on Elm Street, where staff from the lower floors of town hall will temporarily relocate during construction.

Among the $27,344 approved for improvement and renovation change orders, Bill Oestmann, Highway Department superintendent of administration, said Public Works took responsibility for renovating the bathrooms in the temporary office space so they comply with ADA regulations.

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"Because of the hardship on Stewart's to meet the government standards, because the government puts a higher standard on our properties that we rent or we own," Oestmann said.

Renovations to both the men's and women's bathrooms will cost $13,907. Oestmann said this particular job will lead to other ADA compliance issues.

"The break room is hand-in-hand with the bathroom because I have to remove their janitor's closet that is actually protruding into the ladies' room," he said. "To make it ADA compliant, I am moving that over into the kitchen area, and then we have to redo the kitchen area because we're disrupting that."

The break room will cost $7,466.

The least expensive change order will be removing a carpet in the vault to install tile floors, a detail that will cost $2,405.

"I think we're going to see more of this due to the nature of the building," First Selectman Rob Mallozzi said. "And this Board of Selectmen is prepared to meet, two or three of us, to make sure we accomplish properly the execution of these contracts to keep it on schedule. It's very important to us."

According to the minutes of a Town Hall Building Committee meeting earlier this month, Oestmann said staff on the second floor of town hall, such as the Selectman's Office, Finance Department, Human Resources, Public Works and Information Technology will move to the police department.

The board Friday evening approved Public Works to participate in a Small Business Energy Advantage program offered by Connecticut Light and Power to help finance new lighting fixtures and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment at the police department.

"Right now the air conditioning is on its last leg," Oestmann told the BOS, acknowledging Police Chief Edward Nadriczny's concern that the entire building will shut down if the current air conditioning unit fails.

"We've already approved the air conditioning unit," Mallozzi said. "This is a tie-in with another project so that we have less moving parts and get it done in the right time frame of our move over to there."

Oestmann projected the HVAC unit will be installed on the flat roof portion of the building in October, after construction on the main roof is finished in September.

Efficient Lighting & Maintenance will supply the HVAC unit and lighting fixtures for $54,158. However, this cost will be offset by an incentive of $25,278 under the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund. CL&P will also loan the town the remaining balance of $28,880 interest-free, which will be repaid in monthly installments of $802 over 36 months.

"In this situation, it's over $102 a month additional on our bill that pays down," Oestmann said.

This means the town had projected a monthly energy savings of $700.

Since the town is signing into a loan agreement, the Board decided its approval of this request is contingent upon approval from the Board of Finance, which meets Aug. 14.

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