Morgan County Winding Down Pair of Building Projects

By Jeremy Coumbes on August 23, 2022 at 11:04am

A pair of Morgan County renovation projects are at or near completion.

The Morgan County Board of Commissioners approved the final payment for work to renovate the new home of the Morgan County Health Department Monday morning.

Bills in the amount of $337,410.000. Commission Board Chairman Brad Zeller says a large portion of that total goes to rounding out the health department project.

Of course, that is a larger number, but within that amount, $163,489.48 is to the health department and that is our final payment. Administrator Dale Bainter brought it by and said it would be the last one. So we are glad that the project is now completed. We had the opportunity to go over to the open house last week which was very well received.”

Last Thursday, members of the Morgan County Commissioners attended the public open house to tour the new facility on the former campus of MacMurray College.

Zeller says also included in the bills was work that was performed on the Morgan County Public Defender’s Office which was damaged last year when the rear portion of the Lair Building collapsed after a heavy storm when through the area.

We did pay for our roof, $16,767 for the Morgan County Public Defender’s Building that was damaged when the building that was attached to it fell onto our roof too. That project is almost complete. We have the south wall of our building to complete yet. We haven’t decided what we are going to do there exactly with that.”

Public Defender Tom Piper had just recently moved into the old Regional Office of Education building adjacent to the courthouse when the rear section of the Lair Building on West State Street collapsed.

The section of the building that failed in the storm shared a common wall with the Public Defender’s Office, which not only damaged the roof of the county-owned office, but debris fell through the roof opening a hole into the interior of the building causing extensive structural and water damage.

The area that fell was raised by the city and is now an open space bordered by the new back wall of the Lair to the south, the Public Defender’s Office to the north, and a portion of the Rammelcamp, Bradney Law Offices which was also severely damaged by the collapse.

Zeller also announced that the commissioners will be holding a meeting next Monday with a single item on the agenda to review and potentially approve the final draft of the Morgan County annual budget for the fiscal year 2023, which would be placed on file then on Thursday, September 1st.