- Associated Press - Thursday, October 27, 2016

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Work continues at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion to rectify several issues, including the wall interior, the subpar insulation and the lingering smell of rats in Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s private office.

The Arkansas Governor’s Mansion Commission met Wednesday to discuss the state of the building. First lady Susan Hutchinson told commissioners that while in the process of taking out walls in the private office, wiring issues were discovered. The office has been stripped down so that the interior can be sterilized, insulation repaired and odor of rats removed.

Workers are now checking for wiring deficiencies in the rest of the main building, according to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (https://bit.ly/2fbtpIp ).

Other maintenance problems include a leaky roof and a seal on a pump connected to a boiler that broke, spilling water and damaging flooring in the Grand Hall.

The mansion has received a $1.1 million grant from the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council to increase privacy and repair parts of the mansion and surrounding buildings. The grant application included a request of $62,200 for the governor’s office.

Hutchinson said in addition to the grant, she’s also using in-house maintenance staff to help with the work, using donations from local businesses and hosting events to raise money for the Governor’s Mansion Association. She said these decisions will help repair the mansion without taxpayers having an additional cost.

State officials have frequently declared that the 66-year-old mansion has a lot of maintenance problems that have been neglected because the Legislature didn’t appropriate enough funds for upkeep.

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Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, https://www.arkansasonline.com


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