By Katelynn Griffin
Thursday night, the Stanford City Council met with members of the Logan’s Fort Foundation and architect Garlan VanHook to discuss the placement of restrooms at the fort.
In the original blueprints presented to the council, drawn up by VanHook, the restrooms were inside the ice house, but due to the limited space Fort Foundation members asked VanHook to move the restrooms outside, to the back of the building. This would free up space for a larger gift shop inside the ice house.
Construction on the restrooms began at the end of March, but it quickly became apparent that the location was wrong. A miscommunication between the council, the Fort Foundation and VanHook had led to the restrooms being moved to the front of the property.
Fort Foundation member Sheree Gilliam said she didn’t remember anyone saying that the restrooms were to be moved from the back to the front of the property. VanHook responded that “without a doubt we moved it here through committee,” adding that the council had voted on the changes.
Gilliam insists that VanHook made the changes on his own and failed to inform the council. Gilliam said “maybe we’re stupid- we don’t read blueprints.” VanHook said that he has lived up to his professional standards, as well as his contract. In order to move the restrooms back inside the building, he informed the council that a simple change order is required.
Councilmember Mike Southerland expressed his skepticism about the cost of the changes. “They’re bathrooms,” Southerland said. “Why can’t we build them for $36,000?” The original bid was for $35,000, but the final cost is $42,000. Fort Foundation President Irene Jaggers told the council that the foundation has the money in the form of a $20,000 federal grant, but if not used by Aug. 20 the money will be lost. The difference was raised privately, Gilliam said.
Waving the original blueprints in hand, Miracle said “it’s back to this.” The council accepted a motion and it passed unanimously to move the restrooms back inside the building.
In other news, Main Street in Stanford is scheduled to be repaved. “It’s going to get done,” Miracle said. “I promise, by July.” Also on Main Street, Southerland inquired about the curb in front of the Bluebird restaurant. A sewer line had been punctured and Stanford Water had to dig in front of the restaurant to fix the problem. Southerland said that he is worried someone will fall; Miracle said that he would check on it. The council will take action against three properties- one on Lancaster Street, another on Harmon Heights and the last on Sherman Avenue. These properties are in violation of the 60 day ordinance allowing owners to clean up homes that have been burnt out by fire.
On a positive note, Stanford is beginning to reap the profits from the annexation properties, especially the high school. While all the figures have not been tallied as of yet, the high school employees are expected to pay approximately $100,000, an increase of $65,000 from the previous year. Adding money from Walmart and Bluegrass Stockyards, the city is expected to receive $130,000 in tax revenue from the annexation. However, payroll has increased and a couple of unexpected expenditures put a squeeze on the city. The council will entertain the option of taking an open loan of up to $120,000 in order to make the bond payment due at the end of April.
'Portable' toilets frustrate council
Stanford City Council members listened to Fort Foundation members voice their concerns over the placement of restrooms at the fort. (Picture by Katelynn Griffin)