Coffee County is expected to spend about $370,000 to implement an ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) transition plan that will ensure the county meets ADA minimum requirements.
County officials discussed the initial plan at the Coffee County Budget and Finance Meeting Oct. 21.
“The ADA transition plan has been worked on for a long time,” said Coffee County Mayor Gary Cordell. “We have to have this for the state by Dec. 31.”
The preliminary estimation for the cost of implementing the plan is about $370,000, with additional $15,000 for engineering services, said Cordell.
He noted the county’s expenses would be much lower compared to the money Manchester City is expected to pay for its ADA transition plan. The city’s plan will cost $2.8.
Scot St. John, with St. John Engineering, is working with the county on developing the plan.
“He is also working with Manchester and Tullahoma,” Cordell said. “I asked him to look at every building in the county and see where we are. I wanted to see estimated cost to do the repairs and make sure we are complying with ADA. The projected budget he gave me is about $370,000. His cost is about $15,000.”
The Coffee County Commission will have to approve a 10-year plan and submit it to the state before Dec. 31.
“The state will give us 10 years to do the repairs and to make these adjustments,” Cordell said.
The bulk of the total cost – about $90,000 – will cover remodeling the bathrooms at the Coffee County Justice Center, according to Cordell.
These repairs, however, are not high on the priority list. With the justice center being so old, there is a possibility for building a new facility before the deadline for making the required bathroom repairs, added Cordell.
The ADA plan
According to Tennessee Department of Justice, nearly 20% of Americans have disabilities, and they participate in a variety of programs, services and activities provided by their state and local governments. This includes many people who became disabled while serving in the U.S. armed forces. By 2030, about 71.5 million baby boomers will be older than 65 and will need services and environments meeting their age-related physical needs, according to tn.gov.
An ADA transition plan identifies barriers to access in programs and activities. The plan aims to provide equal access to the maximum extent feasible.