Fresno County supervisors voted to move the separated Internal Services Department from two facilities into one site in Clovis.
The plan is to move into the former Pelco/Schneider Electric building at 333 W. Pontiac Way. The vote was 4-1.
The Internal Services Department is in two locations, one near Fresno-Yosemite International Airport and a second behind the now-vacant juvenile hall on 10th Street near Kings Canyon Road.
A search for a new site has been ongoing since 2013, and the county has been seriously considering the Clovis property for much of the past year as an option to combine its two locations into one site.
The county will rent the property for $36,942 per month, or $443,304 annually. It can exercise an option to buy the Clovis building for $4.575 million after two years.
At the 10th Street and Fine Avenue sites the county pays $360,000 annually in PG&E utility costs. In addition, the county pays $252,000 annually to rent the space on Fine Avenue.
County officials expect utility costs to drop because the department will be in one location that was built in 1993 and renovated in 2002, and is more modern than the county’s other sites.
To meet the county’s needs, the building will need about $2.6 million in renovation and improvements, the county’s staff report said.
This provides the board with flexibility while we are attempting to modernize our facilities.
Brian Pacheco, Fresno County supervisor
Robert Bash, the county’s director of Internal Services, said staff members continue to refine those improvement costs and are exploring reusing equipment from the 10th Street building.
Supervisors expressed concern about the county’s other building priorities for the district attorney, Sheriff’s Office and animal control, but voted for the project.
Supervisor Andreas Borgeas said he was initially reluctant to put the Internal Services Division ahead of plans for new buildings for the district attorney, Sheriff’s Office substation and animal control. But he said the Clovis site sounds like “a pretty solid opportunity.”
Supervisor Brian Pacheco said the rental agreement with a possible purchase later offers the county options.
“I believe this provides the board with flexibility while we are attempting to modernize our facilities,” he said. “I believe this will lock in a good building for the county and give us the flexibility to keep all our priorities intact.”
Supervisor Henry R. Perea was the dissenting vote. He said his priority is for the county to spend more time and resources to acquire new offices for the district attorney.