Canton town accepts proposal from firm to conduct needs assessment of municipal building
Monday, June 17, 2019 - 5:49 am

By ADAM ATKINSON
North Country This Week

CANTON – The town board has accepted a proposal from architectural and engineering firm Bernier, Carr and Associates of Watertown to conduct a needs assessment of the municipal building for $19,000 plus $500 in expenses.

The village board of trustees is expected to review the proposal and act on it at a future meeting as well.

The two municipalities, which share the building at 60 Main St., will share in the cost of the study.

At the town board meeting Wednesday, June 12, Town Supervisor Mary Ann Ashley said the municipalities received proposals from five different firms with bids ranging from $8,600 to $36,000.

The bids were reviewed by Ashley, Deputy Supervisor Bob Washo, Village Mayor Mike Dalton and Deputy Mayor Carol Pynchon, who comprise the building committee.

The Bernier, Carr and Associates proposal was recommended based in part on work they have done for the police department in the past.

“And, we felt they were the company to go with,” Ashley said.

“In the decision between the bids . . . There’s quite a spectrum there for price. Can you give us any insight on the rational for the choice, is it the history that they already had working in the building?” asked Town Councilman Phil LaMarche.

“I would say they came with a pretty impressive list of related work,” said Pynchon, who attended the meeting. Pynchon said the firm has done similar assessments at government and school facilities in Lewis County, and presented a solid understanding of the town and village in their proposal.

The town only budgeted $2,500 for the work which will include a full scale study of the municipal building’s space, configuration, heating, infrastructure and technology needs.

The firm will meet with each department and assess the needs of the town and village employees.

“It feels like more money than I was expecting,” said Town Councilman Tim Danehy, “to have someone come in and tell us what seems obvious. This building has a lot of problems.”

“Well we need somebody to come in and professionally write that all up,” said Ashley. “And put together the proposals so we can move forward.”

After discussion, the board approved the bid, pending village acceptance and signing an memorandum of understanding with the village that the cost would be shared equally.