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Council OKs funding for mold remediation

September 21, 2021

The City Council of Webster City Monday night approved additional funding for mold removal in the basement of the Depot Museum in Wilson Brewer Park.

Larry Flaws, director of recreation and public grounds, told the council that Mustang Disaster Cleanup of Ellsworth had completed work in the basement of the old courthouse. But when the crews moved to the basement of the depot, they found much more mold than was expected.

“We had planned to do the flood line — which was four-foot high,” Flaws said. “Once they started tearing out the drywall, they discovered more mold. Three-quarters of the basement is covered in sheetrock. They found that the mold was all the way around behind the sheetrock.”

Mold was also found in the rafters of the basement, he said. But none was found on the main level of the museum building.

Additionally, artifacts and paintings stored in the basement needed to be treated and cleaned.

“There’s a lot of stuff in the basement that needs to be hepa-vacced and cleaned,” he said. “There were 25 pictures that needed to be done by hand and those have been done,” he said. Other artifacts which had been stored in cardboard boxes will also need to be cleaned, according to Flaws. The artifacts, once clean, will be placed into plastic totes, he added.

The additional expense to remove all the drywall, ceiling panels and to clean up the artifacts is $11,138.56. Flaws also said the company would paint the blco walls in the basement, which would seal them from additional mold damage, at a cost of $2,326.56.

In other business, the council approved a quit claim deed for a five-foot strip of land next to the building owned by Susan E. Erickson in the 600 block of Second Street. When the city demolished the former Fuh’s building, the common wall with Erickson’s building was restored and some of the concrete footings are on the city-owned parcel. According to a council memo, the city decided to deed five feet of the city property to Erickson to have access to maintain that side of her building.

Matching funds totaling $7,000 for the Heart of Iowa Regional Housing Trust were approved by the City Council for Fiscal Year 2022. Planning Director Karla Wetzler said the program had proven worthwhile for residents of Hamilton County and Webster City. She said roofs had been repaired, furnaces installed and electric service has been updated. The matching funds will come from the low to moderate income funds created from the residential TIF set asides, Wetzler said in a memo to the council.

The council also approved a request from the street department to seek bids for concrete crack sealing on several streets in the community. The council authorized seeking the bids and proceeding with the lowest bidder provided the bids come in under $50,000.

The street department was also given authorization to seek bids for a 2022 pickup truck with a utility box and to proceed with the purchase if the low bid is below $50,500.

The council also approved and agreed to execute an agreement with the Iowa Economic Development Authority for the Community Catalyst and Remediation Grant Program. A development agreement was also signed with the city and Local Initiative For Transformation-WC Inc. The grant funds will be used for refurbishing and renovating the former Elks Building, owned by LIFT WC.


View the article as it originally appeared in the Daily Freeman-Journal.

Last modified: September 21, 2021

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