- Associated Press - Friday, December 26, 2014

MCCOMB, Miss. (AP) - Consultants for the city of McComb say damage they’ve seen so far from a 2013 hailstorm was worse than they expected.

NewPath Strategy Consultants has examined roof damage and still needs to check water towers and the wastewater treatment building, The Enterprise-Journal (https://bit.ly/13H1Hbo) reported.

Advisors Shawn Hubbard and John Perkins told the city council last week that they should have a final report by the end of January.

A vacant fire station and the police station were especially damaged, they said.

“Especially on the police station,”?Hubbard said. “I’ve never seen a roof beat up like that.”

The city hired NewPath because it felt EMC Insurance was not offering enough money for the damage.

The job includes negotiating with the city’s insurance company. Mayor Whitney Rawlings said.

The city hired NewPath under an agreement that will cost no more than $100,000. City Administrator Quordiniah Lockley said total charges so far are about $70,000.

Selectman-at-large Tommy McKenzie said he would like to see “dollar amounts associated with people”?on the bill since nobody at City Hall reviews the hours NewPath works.

“Y’all are the only consultants ever that are allowed to work and get paid by the hour and there is no one in the city signing off on what you’re charging,” he said. “I just wish that was a little more controlled. … That just makes me feel nervous. “

Perkins said NewPath can get Lockley to sign off on the company’s hours.

The board authorized a $34,572 payment for New Path’s work from Nov. 26 to Dec. 16.

Selectman Michael Cameron voted against the item, saying he never got a more detailed billing statement that he had requested. He was against hiring NewPath from the beginning, saying it made him “uncomfortable.”


Information from: Enterprise-Journal, https://www.enterprise-journal.com

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