Florida Keys News - Islamorada/KL Free Press
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
Charter review, city hall back before council

MARATHON -- A discussion about changing the town charter as well as value engineering estimates submitted for the proposed city hall were on the Tuesday, Jan. 14, Marathon City Council meeting agenda.

Both matters have been discussed previously but resolution on one or both was expected at the meeting, which took place after the Free Press went to print.

Councilman Mark Senmartin led a December discussion in favor of a committee-led charter review as opposed to a council-led review.

A resolution to establish the charter review committee was set late for the council meeting and included fill-in-the blanks dates for starting and completing the review.

The composition of the committee, possibly with one appointee to be made by each councilperson, was also undetermined.

A one-page document provided by City Manager Roger Hernstadt in the meeting agenda summarized the value engineering estimates he was directed to negotiate with the two lowest bidders among six construction firms for the city hall project.

With $5.5 million budgeted for construction, the options before council with the firms West Construction Inc. of Lake Worth and Botsford/Overholt Construction of Marathon include:

• Maintain the same elevation and same square footage (West's cost projection, $5,498,467; Botsford/Overholt, $6,111,000);

• Reduce the council chambers square footage to table seating for 100 people instead of the original request for 200 people (West's cost projection, $5,108,012; Botsford/Overholt, $5,683,249);

• Phase the project and install columns and slab for future council chamber/cultural room (West, $4,391,215; Botsford/Overholt, $5,175,249).

Due to the city's local contractor preference clause, Botsford/Overholt could win any bid within 10 percent of West Construction's bid.

In other business, set for approval for the fire department is the purchase of a new $267,000 fire-rescue vehicle to replace a 2005 Med-Tec unit as well as two replacement pick-up trucks for $50,000 total.

Additionally, the next council meeting date may change to Thursday, Jan. 23, due to a conflict with the usage of the meeting room Tuesday, Jan. 21.

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