The Helotes City Council took a major step in trying to fix the issue of mold growing inside a Helotes Fire Department station.
According to Mayor Tom Schoolcraft, the issue was brought to the city's attention in March of 2014. Poor ventilation seems to be the big problem. Helotes Mayor Pro-Tem Bert Buys said that it was grossly misengineered.
The building is not that old. It was built in 2010.
At the meeting, Councilwoman Cynthia Massey said that she is glad the firefighters came forward. She said that the city has taken all the proper steps to do the right thing.
Chester Bull with Air Authority lives and breathes air quality. He was approached by the city months ago to work on the issue.
"It wasn't a pretty picture," he said after recalling what it was like after first touring the station. "The condition on the equipment for seven years was pretty harsh."
Bull and his company will be assigned to reconfigure and replace the existing HVAC system.
"The big point is updating and upgrading the A/C work and to minimize the future growth, and the future issue with mold and bacteria, and just overall air quality," he said.
On Thursday night, council members unanimously passed Mayor Schoolcraft's proposal to have Air Authority replace the system, which will cost a little more than $65,000.
"It did take us quite some time to establish the sequence of trying to correct this issue," Mayor Schoolcraft said. "There are other factors in there that can contribute to mold growth. There was never a question that there was mold there. It was more of a question as to why?"
Bull said that it would take up to three weeks for the parts to come in and about a week to complete the installation.
KENS 5 reached out to the Helotes Fire Department for comment but we have yet to hear a response.