Comal County Commissioners on Thursday approved $282,085 in change orders associated with construction of the county’s new jail, which now seems headed for completion two months beyond the projected opening in late November.
Seven of the eight orders, totaling $267,208, will be subtracted from the county’s $2.471 million contingency in the project, which now has $2.016 million remaining. County Engineer Tom Hornseth said it took time to compile all the information, which is why they were submitted in a batch instead of individually.
“I don’t think this is unusual for a project of this type and magnitude,” he said. “It’s a very large and complex project and these are typical issues involving our plans and specifications. Some address unforeseen things and others are contractor changes that (align) with our preferences.”
One change order, totaling $14,877, was subtracted from at-risk contractor Yates/Sundt Joint Venture’s contingency fund, which has about $207,000 remaining. Hornseth said construction is progressing on the $72 million, 585-bed facility at the corner of South Water Lane and Interstate 35.
“There’s a lot of work going on,” he said. “It’s an extremely complicated building that has a lot of electronic and surveillance equipment. The project is technically within budget but we are behind schedule — right now the estimation is 60 days beyond the current completion date of Nov. 28.
“The contractors are trying to improve on that any way they can, but again it’s a complex project, and in my opinion things are moving along well.”
Commissioners on Thursday presented C. Herb Skoog with a proclamation honoring him as the 2019 recipient of the Comal County Historical Commission’s Frederick Frueholz Jr. Historic Preservation Award. Skoog was hospitalized and missed the original presentation on May 23.
In 1976, while he was managing partner at KGNB-AM and KNBT-FM, Skoog began a weekly show called “Reflections,” which featured oral histories of New Braunfels and Comal County residents.
“When we started it as part of the United States bicentennial, we thought we’d do a few programs featuring stories from those on days gone by, but after more than 2,000 shows it’s still going,” he said. “Someone once asked if we were afraid of running out of people, but I said I don’t see it ending anytime soon.”
Recordings of those interviews are housed at the Sophienburg Museum and Archives. Skoog is the sixth area resident to be honored with the Frueholz Award, named in honor of the CCHC’s first chair and noted local historian.
Also Thursday, commissioners approved:
• Temporary closures of various county roads connected to Farm-to-Market Road 2673 in Startzville between 10:45 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. for the city’s annual Fourth of July Parade sponsored by Startz Memorial VFW Post 8800.
• Amended plats combining lots in portions of Canyon Lake Village West and Eagles Peak Ranch subdivisions.
• A waiver for county subdivision regulations for a revised plat that transfers ownership of water wells from the Cypress Cove Maintenance Association to the newly-formed Cypress Creek Water Supply Corp.
• The appointment of County Treasurer Renee Couch to represent the county as a voting delegate during the 2019 National Association of Counties’ annual conference in July.
• Submission of an application for a $60,000 grant administered by the Texas Judicial Commission on Mental Health. County Court at-Law No. 2 Justice Charles Stephens said the two-year grant will aid in the county’s data sharing project that will connect the county with mental health and health systems, area non-profits, and city and county justice operations.
• Line-item budget transfers totaling $82,000 for road and bridge department expenses and $7,500 for bullet proof vests for eight new corrections officers.
To access Thursday’s video and meeting agenda, visit www.co.comal.tx.us/agenda.htm.