Diamondhead eyes city hall upgrades
By Dwayne Bremer
Mar 12, 2013, 19:33
The city of Diamondhead recently moved into its new digs at the city hall complex on Diamondhead Circle, and now the city council is looking into ways of improving safety and security at the facility.
In January, the city entered into a lease-purchase agreement on the Diamondhead Baptist Church.
The city will pay off the remaining $1 million owed on the facility and then take ownership, officials said.
On Tuesday, Mayor Chuck Ingraham and the city council met to discuss how to turn the former church into a traditional city hall.
"We want to have a fully-functional city hall," City Manager Richard Rose said Tuesday. "Our goal is to improve safety and security."
Rose said one of the first orders of business will be getting the facility compliant with ADA regulations. That includes adding handicapped parking, toilets, and other amenities.
Rose said the city is eligible for federal reimbursement for the ADA projects and it recently requested proposals for engineering, architectural, and legal services for the project.
While the ADA portion of the project is eligible for reimbursement, the rest of the city hall improvements will come out of city funds.
The total cost of the ADA improvements is about $47,000 and 80 percent of that could be reimbursed, Rose said.
Rose, on Tuesday, also presented the council with a list of items which could be improved at the facility, but would have to be funded by the city.
The improvements include creating a new reception area, adding security cameras, installing a podium in the council chambers and more.
Councilman Ernie Knobloch said the council was evaluating the list to see what items are necessary and which ones may be cut to save money.
The council did not take any action Tuesday on the proposed improvements