Hugus-Ferguson bids come in

By Mathew McKay

RAWLINS — Despite a 33 percent budget cut this year, exterior work of the Hugus-Ferguson building will soon begin — largely in thanks to grants picked up by the Carbon County Museum board.

Following a walkthrough Aug. 3, Bateman- Hall Inc., LM Olson Construction and Shepard Construction each submitted a preliminary contract and figure ranging from $399,000 to $550,000. Kelly Bohanan, Director of the Carbon County Museum, said the board would address each one with the Carbon County Commissioners Sept. 6.

“Right now we are in a holding pattern,” she said.  “There were a couple things on the contract with the lowest bidder that needed to be reviewed by the county attorney’s office.”

In addition to looking at each bid, the board is currently spending time looking at each grant they have and is determining exactly which grants cover what area of the project.

“We have to be a bit strategic,” Bohanan said. “ Some grants will pay for labor, some grants will only pay for materials and some of the grants will pay for both of those things.”

With funding as tight as it has been for the county, Leo Chapman, Carbon County Commission chairman, said it was important that the grants are used to their fullest and the right work gets covered.

Materials for the roof materials will be covered by the Carbon County School District No. 1 rec board grant. In addition, the board also has a second rec board grant, a HUD federal grant, and façade easement grant.

With winter on the way, Bohanan said it is a race against the weather.

“We want to get the roof done,” she said. “The siding work will not be done until the spring.”

Chapman said the process of the Hugus-Ferguson project has been a long one and he believes getting a contract signed would be another step towards completing the project.

While he’d like to the see the project completed within the next two to three years, he said it could take longer than that due to the need for grants and because of the overall work that goes into the project.

Work for the project started in 2013 after the building was purchased in December and has required two architects. Work on the inside of the building has taken place at a steady pace since total access was given to the museum board September of 2015.

“We are very excited about the museum,” Chapman said. “But it is going to be a long process. We are going to be working with that thing well past my tenure and I will be very, very happy when we open the doors.”

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