HUBBARD Study: Mold in building is generally safe



The police station does have an air-quality problem, according to the study.
By TIM YOVICH
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
HUBBARD -- Mold in the Hubbard police station is generally not a health concern unless those working in the building have health issues, a study concludes.
The results of testing by Sylcom Safety Specialists of Youngstown also show the aged building needs a good cleaning.
The conclusions were provided to city council Monday.
Lawmakers agreed to meet at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the city administration building in an attempt to determine the scope of a new police headquarters.
Alternatives
Alternatives that have long been discussed include building a new building, buying a building or adding to the administration building.
In a Monday memorandum to Robert Paterniti, city safety director, Leonard A. Perry, Sylcom industrial hygienist, wrote that police headquarters do have "an indoor air quality problem."
Perry reported the mold spores are likely migrating from the basement to the upper floors. The basement has already been sealed from the rest of the building.
"In general, these molds would not likely be a health concern to individuals who were not compromised by underlying medical conditions, such as asthma or allergies or some immunosupressive disorder," Perry said.
He explained that since he does not know the health status of all the building occupants, the public health significance of the problem can best be answered by a physician familiar with their health status.
Health screenings
The Trumbull County Health Department has been performing health screenings on those who work in the building, built in 1870.
Perry recommended the basement be mopped and specially vacuumed to reduce fungi density.
Paterniti said the cleaning will be done, in addition to removing the carpeting.
City Auditor Michael Villano told council the city has available a $1.1 million low-interest loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture through November 2003 for a police station.
Mayor George Praznik, however, said he would like to see a property tax increase put before voters during a special February ballot. His administration has recommended 1 mill to 1.5 mills that would generate about $100,000 annually over 10 years to fund the housing of the police department in another building.
"I don't think we'd have a problem getting it passed," Praznik said.
Councilwoman Bonnie Viele, D-1st, said a special election that will cost $6,000 "is a strike against us."
Viele agreed with Councilman John Marshall, D-2nd, that residents may not vote for a property tax increase during a special election.
Marshall suggested council consider placing an issue on the May primary election or November general election ballots next year -- because the city wouldn't be collecting the money an issue would generate until 2004.
yovich@vindy.com

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