Placeholder Image Windsor from the Town Green
Courtesy: Town of Windsor


Whether four key municipal buildings in Windsor would collapse in a major earthquake remains an unknown, at least for now.

The town council was poised to approve an $81,000 seismic inspection and report on town hall, police headquarters, Huerta Gym...and the local county library branch. But a 2-2 vote, with Mayor Rosa Reynosa recused, blocked it from moving forward.

Vice mayor Sam Salmon said he doubted significant issues exist.

"I don't see where there's any safety issues with the town hall. There's maintenance issues, Town Hall needs to be painted," Salmon said.

Councilwoman Tanya Potter disagreed, saying the dangers and risks can't be known without a detailed look.

"We don't know that. We can't just sit here and say there's not safety issues when we don't know enough, and that's what this assessment is for. It's to find out if we need more than just maintenance on these buildings," Potter said.

Deborah Doyle, a member of the county library board, says the county conducted seismic audits of every branch...except Windsor's.

It was assumed a new branch would rise with the town's Civic Center project. So the seismic study wasn't done. Meanwhile upkeep on the other buildings was deferred, as officials considered the efficacy of replacing them. With the civic center project in long-term limbo, Doyle said the library branch's condition deserves full review.

While Salmon pitched dedicating money for the to tackle the backlog of deferred building repairs, other members said without the assessment, the town might be sending good money after bad, repairing and investing in structures that might end up needing replacement.

One local woman, who did not identify herself, urged the council to go forward with the study.

"If your family member died in any of these buildings here, eighty-one thousand dollars would not sound like a lot. I was here the night the last earthquake hit, it was terrifying in here. I mean, I'm just surprised something didn't fall off the walls or the wall came down," she said.

In other council action, a presentation on a proposed sale tax surcharge for the Sonoma County Fire District was rescheduled to September 6th.


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