BOLIVAR, Mo. -- The discovery of black mold in City Hall forced municipal leaders to draft a plan of action. Making all the repairs could take several months. That means almost everyone working inside will have to pack up their office and move out.
"There have been some headaches occasionally," said City Administrator Darin Chappell. "Nobody has experienced any difficulties of any significance."
Chappell says those headaches technically began with a thunderstorm that blew through months ago, peeling back part of the roof on City Hall. Rainwater then seeped inside.
The roof was repaired, and everything looked good. However, something didn't smell just right.
"We recognized there was a mold smell, specifically in this office and along this same eastern wall," said Chappell.
That moisture became a breeding ground for black mold.
"It is no problem for somebody just coming into city hall to pay the water bills, or whatever. But long term exposure, if you are working in it eight hours a day, five days a week, it can get to be a problem."
In order to make the repairs and remove the mold, city operations are being moved. Temporary offces, and the police department, will be spread out between leased buildings across town.
"All the services that we provide -- we will respond to calls for service, we will still have a desk available for walk-in reports, things like that. It may be slightly inconvenient, however, we will still be able to do our jobs," said Police Chief Steve Hamilton.
A central place for residents to conduct their business is set to go into a Commerce Bank building on Springfield Street.
"The citizens only have to go to one place. And the scurrying around will be us. We will make ourselves available to them," said Chappell.
City leaders say the move will take place in the next few weeks. The reconstruction of the City Hall could take a few months.