Tax

Franklin County commissioners have approved a $73,575 bill to the Union Fire Protection District for building permit fees for the new county jail project, but they aren’t too happy about it.

At its regular meeting Tuesday, Second District Commissioner Dave Hinson lamented the fact the county does not have an intergovernmental agreement with the fire district, which may have lowered or even eliminated the fees.

“It’s all taxpayer money and all we are doing is shifting it around,” Hinson said. “The fire district has agreements with the city of Union and the school district for things like this. I guess we need to look into one for the county as well.”

Hinson noted the city of Union waived its fees in the building permit process.

Union City Engineer Jonathan Zimmermann said the cost for the city’s building permit process, based on the $18.6 million construction cost, would have been $93,075.

The invoice sent to the county from the Union Fire Protection District itemized three permits, one for the new construction of the 911 dispatch center at $6,225; existing building remodel at $11,475; and new jail building at $55,875 for a total of $73,575.

Presiding Commissioner Tim Brinker said he has spoken to Union Fire Chief Russ Hamilton about the inspections and understands the inspections involved a large number of man-hours.

He added there was no indication the fire district was planning on waiving any of the fees to the county and he’s unclear of the actual scope of work performed.

Calls to Hamilton and the fire district headquarters from The Missourian were not returned by presstime.

Union

Last fall, the city of Union refunded permit fees to the Scenic Regional Library for its new construction project.

Library Director Steven Campbell said the library staff read an article in the Sept. 19 issue of The Missourian and saw the board had agreed to waive fees for the Union R-XI School District’s upcoming construction projects.

Campbell said the library learned fees were waived for East Central College in the past as well. Based on those facts, Campbell requested the library be reimbursed for the fees.

City Administrator Russell Rost pointed out the library could not be reimbursed for the total amount requested. He said a portion of that number includes sewer and water hookup fees which the city has never waived.

Keeping that money meant $22,075 was eligible for refund.

On Tuesday, Campbell told The Missourian the Union Fire Protection District did not waive its fees for the library project.