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BOC to discuss fire station construction

CONYERS - Construction of Fire Station No. 9 on Walker Road, which has been tabled since March due to budget concerns, is slated for discussion Monday by the Rockdale County Board of Commissioners.

Commissioners decided to delay approving the $1.15 million contract with Sunbelt Builders Inc. to build the fire station amid budget concerns for staffing the facility. The contract is on the agenda for the BOC's regular meeting Tuesday and will likely be discussed in agenda review during Monday's work session.

The county has the money to build the structure through the 2005 special purpose local option sales tax. The question has been whether the county can afford to operate the fire station once it is completed.

Rockdale County Commission Chairman Richard Oden has said the county has budgeted firefighters to staff the station, despite a difficult budget year where the county has already slashed $1.6 million from the current budget and likely will need to make more cuts to the $56 million general fund budget.

The construction of the Walker Road fire station was scheduled to have begun last year, but the county released J. Alan Abbott Construction from its contract in January over disagreements with change orders.

In other news, the Board of Commissioners will consider naming former vice president of Clark Atlanta University Bobby Young as the county's new finance director and retired Atlanta Deputy Fire Chief John McNeil as the new emergency services director.

Young was one of two finalists for the job. The other finalist was Edward C. Holloway, chief accountant for the city of Macon's finance department. The men were selected from a pool of 45 individuals who applied for the position after former finance director Mia Wilson resigned in December.

McNeil became the designated candidate to lead the newly created Department of Emergency Services after former Sandy Springs police chief and Conyers resident Ralph "Gene" Wilson withdrew from consideration.

Also on the agenda for Tuesday's regular meeting is a $2.5 million contract with Pittman Construction for road resurfacing. It is the fifth resurfacing contract under the SPLOST road improvement program.

A list of roads proposed to be resurfaced was not immediately available from county officials as of press time Friday.

A deductive change order returning $203,131.09 to the county from a previous SPLOST road contract is also on Tuesday's agenda. The contract, in the amount of $2.979 million, was with C.W. Matthews Contracting Co. and involved various repair work on roads.