Town Board Looks To Mitigate Mold Damage

Photo by Lizzie Nimetz.

The Town of New Paltz board has decided to pay cleaning service Servpro $32,600 to remediate their documents, furniture and computers due to mold found in the hall.

New Paltz Town Supervisor Susan Zimet said after the town received an initial estimate of $150,000, she had the town’s employees go through their documents to see what can be recreated and what books the town can replace with new copies.

“I’m not going to my board or taxpayers to ask for this kind of money,” Zimet said.

Zimet said the state requires that certain documents such as payroll and police records be kept, so the town doesn’t have a choice about whether or not they can keep them.

After the town’s employees went back through the files, they received two bids. One for $95,000 from a company in New York City and Servpro’s $32,600 offer.

The remediation will be paid for with the town’s contingency money, Zimet said. She said she put aside $400,000, which is a large amount compared to the normal $150,000 to $300,000.

“I put the money in because I always knew there was a chance we’d have to move and rent space. I always knew we had problems with the building, but I didn’t realize they were so bad,” she said.

She also said the extra contingency was put aside to get a town financial director, to settle the town’s police contract and to have money for contingency’s sake.

The town received a $50,000 grant from state Sen. John Bonacic to offset the cost of the move. Zimet originally applied for the grant to conduct a study to see if New Paltz could combine the emergency operations center in New York City with the fire rescue and ambulance squads in New Paltz.

Zimet said she received a call from the state telling her to use the grant for brick-and-mortar. Shortly after that, mold was found in town hall, so Zimet decided to use the grant money to address the problem.

“The Town Hall building has declined over the years and this is a project that is sorely needed for the safety of staff and visitors,” Bonacic said in the press release.

Zimet said hopefully by the beginning of December everyone will be moved into the new town hall.

“The most important thing is that we have to get people out of the building,” Zimet said. “We also have to get back to a full-time work schedule, opposed to this scaled down schedule with people being in a building they shouldn’t be in.”

Right now, the modular offices have been put together. Zimet said the sewer and water are being hooked up now and Central Hudson is helping to set up the electricity. This week, new computers will be hooked up and the old ones will be remediated.

In two weeks Servpro will begin to remediate the documents and furniture with mold.

Going forward, Zimet said she doesn’t want to keep town hall by Clearwater Road in temporary headquarters. She wants to build a new town hall in a way that won’t cost the taxpayers a lot of money.

She said she wants to find a solution as soon as possible and would like for the state, country, town, village, schools and college to come together to find a solution that can help.