Published in the Iola Register on Aug. 1, 2013.

Concerns raised about jail construction

 Concerns about the construction of the new Cloud County Law Enforcement Center were raised during a public meeting on Tuesday.
 Hans Hansen, Zahner Hansen Construction Group in Brentwood, Tenn., the general contractor on the project, said that he had been informed there were concerns about the project and wanted to address those concerns.
 Cloud County voters approved the issuing of revenue bonds for the $5.9 million, 80-bed facility in the April 2012 election. Construction on the project began last winter.
Todd Stupka, who had worked on the project for Appletech Construction, Manhattan, read off a list of deficiencies he had seen with the exterior portion of the building.
Stupka, who owns his own construction company, TKA Construction in Concordia, worked on the project for six to seven weeks. He said he left the job because they couldn’t get material on the job.
 “I don’t want to bash anybody here. I just want this to be right, and some things just can’t be right,” Stupka said.
 Stupka was asked to present a complete list of the concerns he has with the building.
“He has brought up the right issues, and we have addressed those issues,” Allan Bohannon, Appletech Construction, said.
Bohannon said that Alliance Steel had provided step by step instructions to bring the building up to warranty.
 Alliance Steel, Oklahoma City, is the manufacturer of the outer shell of the building, and will have a 20-year warranty on it.
 Chris Stupka brought up problems he had seen with the exterior of the building.
“The quick response is we are not done,” Hansen said, “The building is not done.”
Kirk Lowell asked if Appletech has ever constructed a metal building before.
“Farm buildings have been put up better than this,” Lowell said.
Lowell was informed that Appletech has been in business since 1979 and does residential and steel building construction.
Lowell also asked if all of the subcontractors on the job had been paid.
Hansen said that all subcontractors have been paid.
“That was at a detriment to me because my mason didn’t pay his suppliers. It cost me $30,000,” Hansen said.
 Hansen told those in attendance that once the project has reached substantial completion, the architect, Goldberg, Sullivan & McCreary, Inc., will provide a punch list of items to be addressed.
John Hood asked if the punch list could be completed while the building is occupied.
Hansen said that with a jail it is better to have those items completed prior to occupancy so workers are not interacting with the inmates.
“We have done it before, but it is not optimal,” Hansen said.
The date for substantial completion is Sept. 17. The design team will then provide the punch list.
 “If you look at the whole thing, and what is is out there, it is amazing,” Hansen said, “It is going to be a beautiful facility.”
Hood asked what the consequences would be for the county if the facility is not completed on time.
 County commissioner Gail Engle said that there are contingencies in place in case the completion date is not met.
 “Let’s let these guys finish the job and then decide if it is quality work,” Everett Ford said.