FARMINGTON -- City officials may have been pennywise, but pound foolish in at least one major omission from a new City Hall.
City officials built a new City Hall on South Main Street for approximately $3.85 million. The structure was completed in July 2010.
One cost whittled from the project during the planning stages was a power generator. Now, more than a year later, city officials want to revisit that omission.
City Manager Dave Millheim said power to the new structure has been lost at least three times during the past few months, which has caused considerable problems in trying to keep the business of the city going.
Besides the number of people unable to transact city business, Millheim said, the power loss led to the need to replace a server board at a cost of about $2,000. He recommended city staff research the cost of a backup generator, and he hopes to bring a proposal before the city council in the near future to fund the system.
He said the costs of the power outage are a concern, but not nearly as big a concern as not being able to do business with the public.
Mayor Scott Harbertson said city officials provided wiring for a generator in plans for the City Hall, but thought they could transfer an old generator to the new facility.
"We were pinching pennies," Harbertson said in hindsight.
The mayor said the city's current setup allows only 15 minutes of power to backup city systems, which isn't enough and resulted in the need to replace a server board.
Led by former city manager Max Forbush, city officials were able to construct the new city complex using the sale of the former City Hall and a bond to avoid the need to raise property taxes.
In going step by step through the process, city leaders often weighed the merits of possible options and their costs against the final price tag of the building.