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Joe Sousa: Town Should Have Listened to Volunteers on Library

As I read about the problems at the new library the words “we told you so” come to mind.

Going back prior to construction, when the time line was laid out, we were told it would be built and open by May 2015.  Mistake number 1 was when the previous town council waived not only the inspection fees, but the electrical, mechanical, and building inspections, as well. The contractors were allowed to inspect their own work.

Who does that?  The contractors were climbing over each other to complete their work with no inspections.

As soon as the work began, one of the members of the Tiverton Volunteer Building Commission noticed problems. The contractor was pouring the foundation over frozen mud. Furthermore, the foundation was not being properly grounded.

When the Town Council was made aware of the problems, they acted like fools and told the volunteers to stay off the property, even saying they’d be arrested.  Later, we learned that they ordered an inspection, and several problems were found. This information was kept  from the public. I still expect to see cracks in the walls and foundation as the ground settles under the footing.

Water pressure problems showed up soon after, when the high-volume toilets would not flush. A pump for the domestic water had to be installed. At the same time, the fire suppression system set off an alarm for low pressure.

Now, the opening of the new library has been on hold because the sprinkler system has problems. The water pressure required for fire suppression is too low.  A pump and generator at a cost of over ten thousand dollars is needed to make the system pass inspection. The town’s fire marshal signed the plan for the faulty sprinkler system, making matters worse.

The volunteers of the Tiverton Building Committee believe a complete inspection of the building is needed. The rush to complete the building was foolish and could leave the town holding the bag for repairs in the future.  The rush to accept this building was foolish.

The Tiverton Volunteer Building Committee is made up of trade workers from several different fields of construction. We came together to ensure the town doesn’t get ripped off.

It’s our money!

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