The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

March 7, 2013

County Commission hears from both fired and prospective architects

By Kim West

— Three members of the Limestone County Commission departed Washington D.C. Tuesday in time to escape a snowstorm and hold a regular meeting.

Chairman Stanley Menefee and commissioners Gary Daly, Bill Latimer and Ben Harrison spent a long weekend in D.C. to attend the National Association of Counties conference but Daly was unable to attend Thursday’s meeting because of flight cancellations.

Prior to the meeting, two architects from Montgomery-based firms — 2WR’s Mike Watson and Renis Jones of PH&J Architects — addressed the commission.

2WR, which was hired in January 2012, is the former architect for the $3 million ongoing renovations at the Limestone County Courthouse. The commission decided on Feb. 27 to terminate its contract with 2WR, which designed the Clinton Street annex completed in 2004, due to a lack of finalized mechanical and electrical bid documents.

“The contract was terminated because my mechanical and engineering plans were incomplete — that’s true. But the construction plan was only 50 percent complete … it’s hard to get plumbers and electricians on board,” said Watson, who thanked the commission for being paid efficiently.