Waterloo, Iowa (AP) — Members of the Waterloo City Council are taking heat for voting to hire an out-of-state architect for the city’s new public works complex.
The council voted 5-2 last week to hire Kueny Architects of Pleasant Prairie, Wis., to begin the design phase for the complex, financed by a $5 million I-JOBS grant.
Councilman Quentin Hart voted in favor of Iowa-based architects. Hart said the I-JOBS program was designed to boost Iowa employment.
Central Garage Superintendent Mark Rice said Kueny Architects was chosen by a selection committee that reviewed seven proposals — two from Iowa firms. He said Kueny met the requirements the committee was seeking.
Rice said the grant should still generate jobs, pointing out that when construction begins, the work would be performed by people from the local work force.