Madison County commissioners have become familiar with the word “guano” in recent weeks — too familiar.
Now, they’re hoping that contracts with bat removal companies will help relieve two county structures — the old courthouse and the Strickland House — of bat infestation problems, where guano, or bat droppings, pose potential health risks to people who breathe the fumes.
The BOC unanimously approved separate contracts recently to remove bats, cleanup their droppings and seal the buildings so that the critters can’t return.
The commissioners hired Adcock’s Rid-A-Critter for $7,895 to remove bats from the upstairs of the old county courthouse in the center of Danielsville. The service will be paid for with special purpose local option sales tax (SPLOST) funds that were tagged for the renovation of the old courthouse. The removal project is expected to take two to four weeks.
The group also agreed to hire Bigfoot Wildlife for $4,300 to remove bats, clean up their droppings and seal bat entrances into the old Strickland House off Hwy. 98 in front of the recreation department.
Commissioners worry that kids from the recreation department will venture into the Strickland House, where they could face possible respiratory problems if they encounter the droppings. The bat problem is considered particularly bad at the Strickland House and “do not enter” signs are clearly posted on the doors.
“My concern is the liability of someone getting in there (the Strickland House),” said BOC chairman Anthony Dove. “It (the guano fumes) can be very harmful if they get it in their lungs. And this is right in front of the rec department.”
Commissioner Stanley Thomas agreed that the building must be cleaned.
“I don’t think we have a choice,” said Thomas. “Something must be done.”
The group discussed possibly tearing the walls out inside the Strickland House to remove all bats, which may, in fact, be inside the walls. But the BOC agreed to have the company remove only the guano that is visible, which Dove said poses the highest risk to those who enter. The group agreed to seek suggestions from local historic preservation leaders on what should be done with the building. Funding for the cleanup job will likely come from the county buildings and grounds budget.
The commissioners agreed that they do not have the funds now to tackle a major renovation project at the Strickland House.
what happen to the insurance money from the tornado i know the county got paid for the roof and the chimmneys wheres the money now
Just my opinion
10/07/09 at 09:37 PM
I say out with the old in with the new if it's not being used and causes such a risk tear it down. Cost us less in the long run for up keep. How many times are we going to keep paying for rodent removal. So fix or just tear the building down and forget about it.