Government: The City’s $8,500 table

As the City of St. Augustine prepares to announce a budget increase for the coming year, some Historic City News readers are asking themselves if the City has done everything they can to contain costs as they look at spending $8,500 for a table.

The City has been bumming a conference table in the Alcazar Room — it is used by the City Commission and a host of other official boards and community meetings that are held at City Hall.

The existing table has been “on loan” from the Lightner Museum since 1972, and soon will be returned to the museum to be used in their new board room.

Not wanting to miss “an opportunity to spend money”, one reader told Historic City News Editor Michael Gold this morning over coffee, the City has already been in discussion with a local, private architect, Jerry Dixon, to prepare options for replacing the mahogany commission table and redesigning the commission room to the City Commission at their regular meeting on Monday.

General Services Director Jim Piggott said that Dixon has already forwarded him two remodeling proposals — the first would shift the commission to one side with the podium centered and the commission table area elevated 12 to 18 inches; the other would leave the current configuration. Seating remains at 68-69 seats with each design.

Dixon estimates the cost of reconfiguring the room to a “side orientation” at $20,000 to $25,000.

In other news, an 8′ rectangular laminate conference table in mahogany can be bought for only $429.99.

Photo credits: © 2011 Historic City News archive photograph

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