County Engineer Eric Martinez
By KIRSTEN LASKEY
Los Alamos Daily Post
Uncertainties surrounding the new managing contract for Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) pushed Los Alamos County Council to apply the brakes on the kiddie pool capital improvement project.
During the regular County Council meeting Tuesday, June 12, Council passed a motion to postpone approving the services agreement with FBT Architects for the design of the kiddie pool addition at Larry R. Walkup Center until the taxable status of the new LANL contract is known. The amount of that agreement is $509,315.
Councilor Antonio Maggiore made the motion. He told the Los Alamos Daily Post that the council fully supports the capital improvement project but with uncertainty of whether LANL will continue to pay gross receipts tax to County, they can’t move forward on the project.
“All of us on Council are committed to seeing that pool happen,” he said. However, “It’s something we can’t move forward on until we know what our future revenue stream is going to look like.”
Maggiore said Triad National Security, LLC, which was awarded the LANL operating contract has no intention of disclosing whether it will pay gross receipts tax until after the protest period. It could be up to a month until something is known.
Maggiore emphasized the project is put on hold, it is not canceled. “We’ve just put it on hold. We’re ready to go as soon as we know,” he said.
County Engineer Eric Martinez told the Los Alamos Daily Post that this pause in the project is not expected to affect the project’s budget but it will impact the timeline.
“Given Council’s direction, we’re not moving forward until we know more about the LANL contract,” Martinez said.
He added that none of the recreation projects, improvements to the golf course, improvements to the ice rink or the splash pad are progressing forward until more is known about the LANL contract.
Council approved funding for four recreation projects in December. The funds will come from the County’s CIP fund. Up to $6.5 million was approved for the kiddie pool.
According to agenda documents, the design of the kiddie pool addition includes a zero-entry pool with water spray features and mini slide for toddlers, a shallow pool for swim lessons and programming, a lazy river, and a water slide with 2,000 square feet of pool area. The plan also includes three family locker rooms, pool deck, chemical storage, and mechanical rooms to support the addition. Site work will require relocation of gas and sanitary sewer lines.