We appreciate the council’s lengthy discussion regarding Gardner Municipal Airport’s long range plans.
Since the sewer failed and a porta potty was placed on site in April 2017, the estimated cost to replace it has increased from $135,000 to $220,000. City staff has reviewed several toilet options, and there are plans for the council to review all options in the near future.
Kudos to Councilman Lee Moore for asking why the bathroom facilities have to be remodeled when the septic tank is what failed. We’ve wondered that as well. While the ideal – and goal – is to remodel the bathroom and bring it to code, nearly 16 months have passed already.
Kudos to Councilman Randy Gregoryck for asking why the council has been discussing GMA for two years with no decision yet insight.
It will be discussed again in two weeks.
Currently, the city is in violation of its own statutes regarding repair/replacement of flushable toilets.
And a possible tenant willing to make repairs has been rejected because the building can’t be leased without toilet facilities.
Not every problem requires a consultant and long range plans. A little common sense and a call to a local, qualified plumber in the area would probably find a solution; why doesn’t Gardner just call one? We’d guess they can install a sewer line — up to code — in a much shorter time than the 16 months Gardner has spent reviewing the issue.
Or a holding tank.
It’s going to be mighty cold in the outhouse this winter. Maybe the council should meet at GMA and see how they like the wind whistling across the runways on cold January, Monday nights.
In the meantime, inspections were conducted at GMA and indicate buildings may have reached an end-of-life, with problems such as mold, water intrusion and electrical issues. An estimate to replace one existing building is just under half a million dollars.
It makes no sense to talk and talk and talk until the GMA deteriorates; staff is hogtied until directed by council.
The airport is an asset. We hope there is a prescribed maintenance plan – if not, there should be.
Gregoryck mused aloud why the council doesn’t just return the airport to the airport board who used to run it.
Why not? We bet they could have fixed the sewer within the last two years.
And maintained the buildings.
And with less debate and more action.