Donation would allow MAPS to purchase HVAC system for new shelter, avoid delays from bidding process if council gives final approval
By Adam Hocking
MARSHFIELD — In a move that still needs final approval from the Marshfield Common Council, the city’s Finance, Budget, and Personnel Committee unanimously voted Tuesday night to make up to a $60,000 donation to Marshfield Area Pet Shelter (MAPS). As part of that donation, MAPS would purchase a new HVAC system for its new facility. MAPS has been working to repurpose the old airport terminal building on the Marshfield Municipal Airport property into a functioning temporary pet shelter.
The city previously approved transferring $60,000 from its contingency budget to its airport fund to pay for a new HVAC system in MAPS’ new location. However, because the city would be purchasing the HVAC system in that scenario, it would have to open the process up for competitive bidding, which could delay MAPS in opening the shelter.
By making a donation directly to MAPS, which can then independently purchase and pay for the HVAC system to be installed, the bidding process can be avoided. MAPS would not have to put the HVAC work out for bid like the city is required to under state statute.
City Administrator Steve Barg said that the original plan to put the HVAC project through the bidding process could mean significant delays in opening the shelter, potentially pushing the time frame for opening back to the end of October. MAPS President Karen Rau said that Sept. 1 might be a rough estimate of when the new shelter could open if the council gives final approval to the donation, which would eliminate the bidding process.
“It could expedite the time a little bit. I’m not sure how much faster they (MAPS) could do it than we could, but certainly they could do it more promptly than we could because they wouldn’t have to go through some of the things that we do here as a public entity,” Barg said.
MAPS has been in contact with House of Heating Inc., who would be ready to start work on an HVAC system immediately, said Rau. Rau added that MAPS would likely be able to get the HVAC installed at a lower rate than the city could.
“We’re going to be able to do this cheaper than what the city can do. We’re thinking that we’re not going to even come close to that $60,000,” Rau said.
“By them doing this on their own, they probably will get it for less money than the $60,000,” said Finance, Budget, and Personnel Committee member Gordy Earll. “They could start tomorrow, where we’re going to be spinning our wheels trying to put this out on bid if we don’t do it this way.”
If MAPS is able to purchase and install the HVAC system for less than $60,000, the language used by the Finance, Budget, and Personnel Committee that the donation would be “up to” $60,000 could result in the city paying less toward the project than it originally anticipated.
“I think that they will definitely save time, and they may well save cost,” Barg said of the scenario in which MAPS is donated the funds for the HVAC system.
Besides the cost of the HVAC system, Rau estimated that about $25,000 in other renovations still needed to be done to make the old terminal building into an adequate pet shelter.