New county office building likely
October 10, 2012

Construction of a new Butler County office building now appears likely.

The county commissioners Wednesday approved phase II of an existing contract with the firm Stantec, which has a Butler office, to design a new building next to the government center.

The commissioners will vote again once a price for the work is set.

The vote Wednesday was 2 to 1. Commissioners Bill McCarrier and Dale Pinkerton agreed construction of a new building at the site of the former prison Vogeley Street is the county’s best option.

During a presentation, Pinkerton said the facts support construction as the most effective way to address cramped quarters in the government center and courthouse.

“I believe it is the right thing to do,” he said.

Commissioner Jim Eckstein, who favors buying the Holly Pointe building on Main Street as a less costly alternative, dissented in the vote.

Eckstein said he wouldn’t vote on a contract he hadn’t seen.

“I don’t know what it is,” he said.

County officials responded they were unaware he didn’t have the document to review.

The previous board of commissioners approved a contract with Stantec. The $35,000 first phase was to do an office space study with an option to undertake the second phase later.

Eckstein said office space needs don’t have to be addressed through a new building.

“They have grandiose plans and no money,” he said.