PEPPERELL -- Selectmen heard updates from Town Administrator John Moak on the status of mold in the town's public-safety complex in a brief meeting Monday.

The town has hired a mechanical-engineering firm to decide how best to replace the building's HVAC system and is getting pricing on trailers to temporarily relocate staff.

"We feel pretty good that we have a plan to get started," Moak said.

Moak said the $60,000 appropriated by the Finance Committee Jan. 16 had helped start the process, but the total cost could reach $210,000.

A Special Town Meeting will be held Feb. 3 to appropriate an additional $150,000 to pay for cleaning and a replacement HVAC system. To reach a quorum for that meeting, 75 residents must attend.

The process will take four to five months, Moak said.

During that time, police officers and administrative workers will be relocated to two trailers in front of the building and the Fire Department will be moved to the Park Street station.

The Communications Department will work out of a 911-enabled trailer for three to four days while their offices are cleaned in the first stage of the project, Moak said. After that, they will be able to work in that section of the building while the cleaning process continues.

Police will also have access to the public-safety building for evidence and ammunition storage while the work is being done, he said.


If the request for appropriation passes at Special Town Meeting, Moak said he hopes to have the trailers brought in by the following week so that work can begin.

"We probably should have had the staff out earlier, but nothing goes quickly in this situation, and we didn't even have the money until last week for the rentals of the trailers," Moak said.