The city of Union Gap has pushed back plans to move staff into a temporary city hall complex until August at the earliest.
And the new reason is the same as the old reason: toxic mold.
In January, the City Council voted to purchase a six-part modular complex that would replace the mold-infested City Hall building that was closed a year ago. But when the parts arrived from Spokane-based Williams Scotsman Inc. mobile office provider in February, workers discovered one part of the complex was infested with mold.
“They did disclose it to us right away, but through the process we realized they would have to replace” the whole building, interim city manager Chris Jensen said.
Jensen said there was no way for the seller to replace just part of the building because of the construction method. The city returned the $330,000 structure to the seller at no cost to the city, but under state law they now have to move forward with a second bidding process.
The estimated 17 city staff who were displaced by the move were expected to move into the modular complex by May, but now that timeline has been moved to August or September, Jensen said.
The city previously approved $430,000 for a modular complex, but about $100,000 of that was for grounds work associated with setting up the modular complex.
The city intends to use a temporary city hall for the next five to seven years as officials plan for what the size and functions of a new city hall facility would encompass.
Jensen said Williams Scotsman Inc. has the right to make another bid on providing the office, but accepting it might come with a caveat the second time around.
“If they’re the successful bidder we’ll have to talk about them a little closer,” Jensen said.
The project will also have a new lead come Monday, when new city manager Rod Otterness takes office.