Thursday, August 6, 2015
$2.1 million hoax
In 2014, the Legislature directed the AHS to estimate how much it would cost to reopen the mineral museum. Prior posts reported that the AHS and DOA (Department of Administration) told the Legislature that it would cost $2.1 million to reopen the mineral museum. That number has been widely reported in the media, and the DOA has reportedly claimed that there are no discretionary items in that number. According to a Dec 18th DOA letter to the Joint Legislative budget Committee, the first level breakdown of the $2.1 million dollar estimate is as follows:
Exhibits and Operating Space
Exhibits Space Reconfiguration $230,000
Technology and Multimedia improvements $175,000
Gift Store Equipment $15,000
Classroom upgrades $10,000
Collection storage upgrades $100,000
Major Building System Upgrades
Demo and Interior Finishes $450,000
Mechanical System Upgrades $200,000
Electrical Upgrades $275,000
Fire Alarm Upgrades $84,000
Fire Sprinkler Upgrades $56,000
Exterior Upgrades $78,000
ADA Upgrades $100,000
Construction Contingency $177,300
Hazardous Material Abatement $20,000
Design Fees $150,000
Perhaps the fire sprinklers and fire alarms should be upgraded before the building is reoccupied. But how many of the other upgrades necessary to simply reopen a functioning mineral museum?
Why is $150,000 of design work necessary? Why must the interior of the exhibit space be reconfigured for $230,000?
Is $15,000 of gift store equipment needed because the AHS threw out existing equipment that was in an operating gift shop?
How much of the $2.1 million is really necessary to reopen the mineral museum? Is the AHS trying to resuscitate their posh Centennial Museum under another name?