Day Center Unanswered Questions

Posted May 14th, 2014 @ 9:13 AM by

The county board may be voting on the day center tomorrow, ask your county board supervisor not to vote on it until they can answer these questions . . . and probably more!

I attended the Health and Human Needs meeting, the Homeless Issues Committee meeting and the tour of the Porchlight building – and I hear quite a few questions that have not yet been answered.

LOCATION/TRANSPORTATION
- How will people get to the day center? (I’m looking for a factual explanation of how person A gets to point B)
- How many bus tickets will be available and under what conditions? (What will that cost?)
- Will there be a shuttle system available? Who would run it? (What will that cost?)
- How will they supplement the bus service on weekends and holidays when the buses run once and hour and less hours? Sundays are particularly difficult as there is no place to go when the library is closed.
- What happens in a snow storm when everyone is stuck downtown when they get out of shelter?
- What are the details of the bicycle plan being offered?
- Will bus tickets be available downtown to get TO the center, or do people have to walk to get there to get a bus ticket?
- How much of the transportation plan is additional funds and how much takes away from the current need?
- Is the route safe for pedestrians and bicyclists of varying abilities? There are multiple busy intersections and Martin Street does not have a side walk.

SAFETY
Fire
- The private well water system won’t support a sprinkler system because there is not enough water pressure so capacity is limited to 99 until that can be installed, what happens if more than 99 people are in the building, will it be safe? (They exceeded the capacity on E. Washington quite frequently, 125 – 150 people in a day.)
- The fire department can’t use the hydrants in the area, instead they have to use tanks to bring water in, would they be able to handle a fire in a building this large with this many people?

Police
- The Town of Madison Police Chief says they don’t have resources to handle any more calls, what happens if they can’t respond?
- What kind of training does the Town of Madison have for dealing with people with mental illness?

FINANCING
- How much will the transportation plan cost?
- How much will it cost to remodel the facility?
- How much will it cost to expand the facility when Porchlight (and the music studio) leaves the back area and they can expand into the full 8,000 square feet?
- How much will it cost to connect to city water beyond the $30,000 – $40,000 to get the pipe done?
- How much will it cost to put in the sprinkler system at a later date?
- How much will the expansion when Porchlight leaves cost?
- Susan Schmitz says that Downtown Madison Inc. didn’t commit to raising $75,000 in private funds (Lynn Green says that is a misunderstanding and just a number they put in the budget), so how much private money is going into this project? What is DMI’s commitment?
- United Way committed $50,000 (to match the city $50,000 and the county $50,000) to help run the facility for half of 2014, but is not committing any funds after this year, where will the $300,000 needed to operate this facility 365 days a year come from? What is United Way’s commitment to this project?
- Why are we paying what appears to be $100,000 more than the building is worth?
- Why are we renting the back storage area to Porchlight and the sound studio for $1.
- If the sound studio stays, is Porchlight collecting the rent, or is the county? How much per month are they paying? (Wait, why is the sound studio staying?)
- What happens to the $469,000 that currently goes to Porchlight to run a day center in this location? (Porchlight staff and United Way couldn’t really answer this question)
- What is the cost difference between floor plan A and floor plan B?

FLOOR PLAN
- Sarah and Z! (they will be running the facility) gave input on the floor plan for 60 minutes, but have not been asked to review the proposals, do they feel this is sufficient, what are their concerns? What kind of input will they get?
- The floor plan only allows for 5 – 6 children, is that sufficient?
- There are only 3 washers and dryers, will that be sufficient? (Especially on days when it rains when people are sleeping outside)
- Is there a sufficient number of showers?
- Is the kitchen area sufficient?
- Which floor plan are they approving? A? or B?

OTHER WATER QUESTIONS
- How long will it take to connect to City of Madison water?
- Will there be sufficient water pressure for the low-flow fixture showers?
- How will the addition of washers, showers and additional bathrooms and cooking facilities impact the water pressure on the private well in the area, will it be sufficient?

OTHER
- Who says that people who use this facility can’t use the park across the street? (Steve Schooler didn’t know the answer.) What is the Town of Madison parks policy for behavior issues?
- How long will Porchlight stay in the facility?
- What happened to the MARC building, if we have to pay for transportation, isn’t that a better building with more amenities around it?
- One of the big questions of the neighborhood relates to notice and input of other neighbors, including schools, service providers, and businesses. If they have not been notified, when will they be? Will they have input into the operations of the facility?
- What is the plan for the people using the facility now when it gets shut down for renovations?

I’m sure there is more, these are only my questions off the top of my head.

Motion by Homeless Issues Committee is to refer the motion to purchase 1490 Martin St. until they get detailed financial information on the the transportation costs, cost to install a sprinkler system, costs for adequate water/sewer services and expanding the capacity over 99 and asking the County Board to delay until this information is provided. Unimous except the United Way representative that voted no.


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