Commissioners discuss problem with window project

Marion County commissioners Dan Holub and Lori Lalouette take a break from Monday’s meeting to examine the borders and sashes of the replacement windows in the courthouse. The colors that were applied did not match the original agreement. Earl Winter (standing in background) of Winter Construction and crew will repaint frames and sashes.Marion County Commissioners learned at the Dec. 5 meet­ing that almost all the restored courthouse windows have a white border and sash instead of a sand-colored look, which was the original agreement.

Commission Chair Randy Dallke said he wasn’t happy about the situation.

“I think it is our due diligence to have the people we hired to come and talk to us,” he said.

Commissioner Dan Holub said the contractor needs to settle this upfront.

“It’s not on us or Winter Construction,” he said.

Earl Winter, son Todd Winter and Chris Sprowls with Winter Construction were at the meeting to answer the commissioners’ questions.

“As soon as the first (storm window) came off the truck, a call was made,” Sprowls said. “It will be tedious because we need to get a nice straight line so it’s a slower painting job then if it was just the frame.”

Earl Winter said in order to repaint the windows, the temperature will need to be a least 36 degrees.

Holub said he didn’t want them pushing the envelope.

“We paid good money to make sure this happened and happened right,” Holub added. “The windows are pure white and they should have been sand-colored.”

Holub said it was not the county’s mistake, but the workers restoring the windows.

Commissioner Lori La­louette said the pure white wasn’t horrible, but it makes the limestone look dirty.

“We need the windows to be functional, but also look good,” she said.

Sprowls said the windows would not need to be pulled out, but could be painted on site.

What happened?

According to County Clerk Tina Spen­cer, when the window project began, the commissioners chose the off-sand color, which was called “colonial white.”

That was the color of the storm windows ordered, and the window frames and sashes were supposed to be that color also.

But when the production manager at ReView Windows, the general contractor for project, matched the color, it wasn’t colonial white.

“Instead they matched the pure white sample, which is made by the same company,” she said. “The window contractor ordered the wrong paint for the windows and the window frames.”

It was something that should have been caught earlier by the architectural firm overseeing the project, she said, but the mistake wasn’t discovered until the storm windows arrived on site last week.

The commissioners talked about three options to fix the problem, she said.

The options were:

• Repaint the windows and frames that were erroneously painted white.

• Try to repaint the storm windows that were the sand color to match the white on the windows.

• Order new storm windows to match the white paint that is already on the windows and frames.

The third option could add additional cost to the project and would cause a delay of six months because the manufacturer of the storm windows has a backlog of work.

After polling the other commissioners, Dallke offered a motion to have all white storm windows at no cost to the county and move forward; the motion failed for lack of a second.

The next motion, Dallke said, would be to have the pure white color on the windows and sashes painted in the sand color originally intended and, also at no cost to the county.

That motion passed 3-0.

Other business

In other business, the commissioners went into several executive sessions:

• a 10-minute session for attorney/client privilege with County Attorney Susan Robson and Spencer.

• or personnel performance with Ray Cook, county appraiser, and Spencer.

• for personnel performance with Spencer.

• went into executive session for 20 minutes for personnel performance with Diedre Serene, health department administrator.

• for five minutes for personnel performance with Ed Debesis, EMS director.

• for personnel performance with Spencer and commissioners.

No decisions were made in public session following the executive sessions.

The commissioners will be meeting at 3 p.m. Dec. 7 for personnel and preparing department head evaluations. The majority of the meeting will be in executive session, Spencer said.

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