The State Worker

Jon Ortiz chronicles civil-service life for California state workers

From the Notebook: Troubled California state building makes investment – in scaffolding

07/21/2014 3:21 PM

07/22/2014 7:37 AM

Crews will start work Friday at the vexed Board of Equalization headquarters, but it won’t be to fix the crumbling waste-water plumbing or to replace faulty exterior glass panels that were among the long list of tower defects chronicled by The Sacramento Bee on Sunday.

Instead, the three-day project that kicks off at the end of the work week will replace the rented scaffolding erected two years ago with scaffolding that the state is purchasing.

Officials ordered the pipes and plywood installed on the 24-story tower’s sidewalk and its parking structure’s top level after an exterior glass panel popped off the building’s 8th floor and nearly struck a pedestrian in 2012. According to a BOE memo sent to employees last week, the scaffolding has to be replaced “due to the expiration of the contract with the previous fencing vendor.”

Renting the scaffolding cost the state about $10,000 per month, Department of General Services spokesman Brian Ferguson said. The state is paying $100,609 for the new scaffolding.

“The thought being that this will be a net savings,” Ferguson said, “as the state will be able to reuse it on other projects in the future.”

BOE Scaffolding Memo

Some other documents that informed the Sunday story:

The final report on the Jan. 11, 2012 exterior glass incident.

A time line and explanation of why the Board of Equalization moved from 1040 N. St. into the Capitol Square Building at 450 N St.

A 1990 letter from consultant Equitable Real Estate Investment Management Inc., explaining why the deal is a sound pension-fund investment.

CalPERS’ 1990 feasibility study that references changes to the tower, including additional floors and other design changes.

From the Notebook posts give State Worker blog users the notes, the quotes, the documents and the details that inform news stories about California state employees and where they work.

About This Blog

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at or 916-321-1043. Twitter: @TheStateWorker.


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