Serving the community since 1922

City makes progress on PAL building

Wasco moved forward with the construction rehabilitation phase of the Police Activity League building, accepting a bid from Crosswhite Construction Inc. for $498,684 and up to an additional $150,000 for changes, with hopes to get outside funding to help pay for the project.

On Dec. 28, 2022, the city received an executed agreement from the Housing and Community Development Department approving an amendment of funds totaling $511,964. Out of these funds, $184,869.44 was used to assist local residents impacted by covid-19 with rent, mortgage and utility bills.

This left the city with $327,095, which was initially budgeted for $378,240 from the CIP Budget Book under Project #23030 to rehabilitate the Wasco Sheriff Activities League Youth Center, now the Police Activities League. Staff anticipated that costs for the construction phase could be higher than the remaining balance and requested additional funds from HCD. That request is still processing, but early feedback is encouraging.

The rehabilitation project consists of three phases, two of which have been completed. Phase one involved tearing down the interior walls and insulation to allow staff and engineers to see the building's current condition. Phase two involved the engineering design for the remodel work. Phase three will involve significant construction to complete the renovation per the plans and specifications defined during phase two.

Chief of Police Charles Fivecoat said, "The rehabilitation is very important to our next phase because we want to start our youth programs, so what we are hoping to do is while that building is being remodeled, we'll be developing the program and all of the necessary administrative work for the program. Hopefully, by the time the building is done, we'll be ready to start."

City Manager Scott Hurlbert shared his thoughts about the Police Activities League. "It's a great program for the youth, and it helps build a bond between the community and the officers."

Two proclamations were also made at the meeting: one for National Police Week and another for Community Action Month.

Councilmember Gilberto Reyna said, "Our city issued a National Police Week proclamation to honor the brave police officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. It is with heavy hearts that we remember two fallen heroes – Sheriff's Deputy Philip Campas, EOW: Sunday, July 25, 2021, and Constable Joseph E. English, EOW: Saturday, Aug. 15, 1936. Both lost their lives by gunfire in service to our residents, and we will forever be grateful for their sacrifice. As we reflect on their bravery and selflessness, let us be inspired to support and uplift our current officers, who continue to put their lives on the line to keep us safe. Together, we can honor the legacy of those who have fallen by doing good in our community."

Mayor Pro Tem Valentin Medina commented on Community Action Month: "We truly appreciate all the work and dedication Community Action Partnership of Kern does for our Wasco residents. Tonight's proclamation is well deserving and a recognition of all of their efforts that don't go unnoticed. We look forward to the continued success and partnership of CAPK so that they can remain a resource for our community for many years to come."


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