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BUILDING STATS AND PHONES 6-13-16 LMS

Lemhi County rates of construction are, “…hanging in there.”

The Lemhi County Building Department tracks the number of building projects in the county from January to December. Department Administrator Gary Goodman said since January 2016 there have been 10 new house building permits issued, two permits for manufactured homes and 50 miscellaneous projects such as garages or additions. The total of 92 permits so far this year also includes 12 commercial projects and 18 HVAC (heating, ventilating and air conditioning) permits.

Goodman told the Lemhi County Commissioners June 13 that he rated the numbers as slightly better than normal and said they are back to standard levels which existed before the nationwide drastic dip in the economy.

Fiscal year numbers are tallied from October 1 through September 30. The city’s valuations include the new clinic being built by Steel Memorial Hospital which Goodman said brought numbers to 422 percent of normal.

Under the total fees collected the city stands at 79 percent. Goodman explained that the fee figures are calculated to the month so actually 79 percent means the city is a little behind. A 100 percent would mean being right on track compared to past years for that particular time frame.

The county’s valuation stands at 100.6 percent. County fees collected are at 116 percent of normal. The total combined valuation for the city and county is at 183 percent due to the clinic construction.

Goodman said the most important figure is the number of total fees collected which is 106.6 percent of normal. He said that means the overall county is slightly ahead of normal for October 1 through May 31.

Eighty percent of the building is taking place in the county and 20 percent in the city. Goodman said the city averages four new houses a year, nine manufactured homes, 34 “others”, 15 commercial plus 14 HVAC permits. The county averages 26 new home permits per year, 19 manufactured homes, 78 “others”, ten commercial and 63 HVAC permits.

He said the amount of current building activity is way ahead of the past five years however looking at the good times and bad times over a period of 30 plus years he said, “We’re hanging right in there.” He added the numbers have been adjusted for inflation.

Goodman also commented that some local realtors say there are very few rentals available.

The topic then switched to the county’s need to replace its phone system and all that is connected to it. Goodman said there were four responses to the county’s invitation for system proposals.

Based on a detailed review of each proposal the commissioners felt the package offered by CusterTel was in the best interests of the county and they passed a motion to that effect.

Others offering proposals and quotes were CenturyLink, Computer Zen and Datatel Incorporated. The county’s complex multilayered system requires quality of service, mega bit internet connections, telephone connections, voice and data capabilities plus the proper band width frequency spectrum to deliver all the present and future needs.

County Attorney Bruce Withers said the transaction is excluded from the statutory procurement process because two of the quotes were below the $25,000 threshold which activates the process. CusterTel was one of the two beneath the process threshold.




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