In the video, Restoration Special
Bill Walter discusses many issues he discovered as he assessed what
needs to be done to restore the courthouse.
Videographer Michael Proctor, who also did the first video, shows
many problem areas around the courthouse as Walter discusses them.
One of the problem areas shown are the windows. Walter said the
water tightness and air tightness of the windows are less than
adequate and need replacing. He hopes to replace them with more
historically accurate windows. Using thermal panes and putting in a
climate-controlled HVAC system would provide maximum energy
efficiency and regular moisture.
Because the historical tile floor absorbs moisture and then expands,
it has developed cracks. The video shows various areas where that
Walter said in his assessment, he saw problems with the electrical
system and some of its hardware and wiring. Water leaking in after
heavy rains has caused corrosion in one of the electrical panel
boxes shown in the video.
The security system also needs to be upgraded to make it better for
the Sherriff and his duties to protect the public. Walter would like
to combine that with upgrading the electrical system to better
service all the technical devices used now.
Walter said the dome, which was what he was originally contacted
about, is showing an exaggerated number of leaks. When the roof was
modified years ago, some of the drains were moved, making it harder
for the roof to evacuate the water. The leaks have caused damage on
the third floor, which the footage shows. Reintroducing drains would
stop the leaks.
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Moving on to the front of the building, the video shows issues
with the sandstone façade. Walter said some sandstone has become what is called
‘dead stone’ due to freezing and expansion over the years. Shale pieces and
slivers are being pushed off the lower part of the building and some of the
decorative columns. Restoration of the stone could prevent deterioration.
The joints and underpinning of the steps have suffered damage from water causing
movement and deterioration. Repairing and restoration of the steps would make
them safer for everyone.
The Plexiglas shown in the video has replaced the stained glass
panels removed a few years ago after water penetration was caused structural
pieces to fall off. The original panels would be repaired and restored after the
restoration program is complete.
Walter said the lack of maintenance on a routine basis has been a problem.
Instead of pushing good money after bad, Walter said we need to make a
concentrated effort to allocate the appropriate amount of funds to restore the
Logan County Circuit Clerk Mary Kelley has worked in the courthouse for 42
years. She has seen various repairs done by the County Board when funding was
available. Kelley said many people come in daily and she often hears how
beautiful the building is.
Kelley said the upcoming sales tax referendum on the March 17th ballot is
strictly for courthouse restoration. The 50 cents sales tax on every $100 worth
of non-food items would provide the money needed for repairs. This referendum
has a sunset clause expiration date of twenty years unless the county board
votes to end it earlier. Kelley said those who have questions should talk to the
county board members.