KITTANNING – Armstrong County’s long-hoped-for plans to restore the county courthouse in Kittanning took a hit last week as bids came in higher than expected for the project.

At their meeting on June 18, county commissioners Don Myers and Jason Renshaw voted to table and review the three bids received for the work.

Only one bid was submitted for each facet of the project, and the county’s architect said the restoration of the courthouse cupola and other work was very specialized, perhaps limiting the number of contractors in the region able to do the work.

Miller-Thomas-Gyekis Inc. of Pittsburgh submitted the only bid for the general construction contract, offering a base bid of $2,843,431. Two alternate bids were also submitted, one that would deduct $8,560 from the overall project, and another that would deduct $64,200.

The same company also submitted the sole bid for the roofing contract in the amount of $815,386.

IE Power of Freeport submitted the lone bid for the electrical contract, in the amount of $146,850.

Officials noted that the county has received a $100,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission for the restoration work.

In other business at last week’s meeting, the commissioners agreed to donate the Armsdale building and much of the property at the site along Route 85 in Rayburn Township to the Armstrong County Conservation District.

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The donation includes 14.8 acres at the site, but does not include the county’s 911 center or recycling center.

The Conservation District intends to demolish the building, and begin plans for future development at the site that would include an agricultural and conservation center for the county.

Other Business

• Officials from the U.S. Census were on hand at last week’s meeting to announce that the census deadline has been postponed from July 31 to Oct. 31. They said that census workers would begin to knock on doors on Aug. 11, and encouraged county residents to fill out their census forms online, by phone or via a mail-in paper copy prior to that date.

At present, they said, 63.3 percent of Armstrong County residents had completed the census forms, slightly less than the state’s average of 64.8 percent.

• The commissioners approved a $3,000 Marcellus Legacy Fund allocation to the Leechburg Area Pool, and a $5,000 allocation for the Armstrong Center for Community Learning.

• A cooperative agreement between the county and the City of Parker was approved for the administration of DCED Multimodel Transportation funds totaling $104,130 that will be used to pave multiple streets in Parker.

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