Fixing the Pulaski County Courthouse without adding to the county’s debt is the goal of a proposal from a county council member. Mike Tiede presented a list of ideas to the county commissioners Monday.
He suggested that instead of doing a large project, the work could be spread out into smaller parts. “You know, we already had the engineer come and told us what everything we needed was,” Tiede said. “So I thought, maybe, if you did like so much every year, like fix the flashing the first year and then get the water away from the structure and then maybe the second year, you could surely find somebody to make that vent for that bell tower, local, to keep the bats and the birds out.”
Tiede said there might also be lower-cost options for windows and exterior work. “I take this stuff and spray it on – it’s approved for concrete, brick, and everything else, and it kills the mold,” he said. “You just spray it on, it goes away. And I’ve got some in my truck. If you guys wanted me, I could go do like a foot-by-foot section and try it.” But Commissioner Kenny Becker pointed out that the work will likely have to meet historic preservation guidelines.
Tiede added that while many of his constituents are in favor of replacing the courthouse with a new one, others would like to see it be repaired. “I think there’s so much opposition to tearing it down, it would never happen, but then, people don’t have very good memories of the courthouse,” he noted. “You just go there and pay your taxes or go to court. So a lot of people don’t even care. But then, some people do care.”
Tiede felt that with the county’s current financial situation, it’s not a good time to go into debt and put a burden on the taxpayers for the next several years.