Girardville OKs loan for roof project, equipment

John E. Usalis, Republican & Herald, Pottsville, Pa.
·2 min read

Feb. 23—GIRARDVILLE — After years of searching for funds, the borough is receiving money to replace the original municipal building roof that has needed work for some time.

Borough council at its Feb. 10 meeting adopted Ordinance No. 2021-2. It involves the issuance of a general obligation note through Mid Penn Bank of $207,500 that will refinance the existing loan and provide interim financing for the construction of a new roof and the purchase of a backhoe, which has already occurred.

The borough received word in October that the U.S. Department of Agriculture is providing a $49,500 low-interest loan through its Rural Development agency to replace the entire roof of the building, located at Fourth and B streets. Some funds will also be used for the 2020 Case 580 loader and backhoe, which replaces a 15-year-old backhoe that had become too costly to repair and maintain. The new backhoe cost $91,500.

The building was constructed in 1977. The roof is significantly deteriorated and leaks, prompting patchwork repairs over many years.

The building houses the administrative office, the police department, the garage that holds the police vehicle and street department equipment and a large room used for council and other meetings. The latter room is also used by private organizations for meetings and activities.

According to project manager Katie O'Regan of Entech Engineering Inc., the borough's consulting engineers, bids were received from 12 firms. The apparent low bidder is Ark Contracting LLC, Mount Union, which bid $95,047.

Council President Charles Marquardt is pleased with the winning bid.

"We actually came in under bid for doing the soffit and the roof," he said, explaining that separate bids were sought for both parts due to concern that a combined project would go exceed the available funds. "We actually came in for the allotted amount for all of it.

"That was a sweetheart of a deal."

Funding for projects at the building will be sought.

"Now we're going to want to get the doors replaced and, of course, we'll be looking to get CDBG (Community Development Block Grants) to get handicapped accessibility for the bathrooms. We got turned down last year," Marquardt said. "We applied for funds for storm drains and the bathrooms.

"We'll submit the same projects and maybe by chance get the handicapped accessibility for the bathrooms and also the exterior doors, which are shot, (and) also a new garage door and better lights for the garage."

Contact the writer: jusalis@republicanherald.com; 570-628-6023