The Department of Veterans Affairs operates the Veterans' Home of California in Yountville. The Yountville facility provides five levels of care, ranging from residential to acute health care. The 2000-01 capital outlay program for the home includes $8.7 million from the Veterans' Home Fund ($4.6 millionbonds) and federal funds ($4.1 million) for capital improvements. The funds requested from the Veterans' Home Fund are contingent on passage of $50 million of veterans' home bonds included on the March 7, 2000 ballot. The future cost associated with the requested projects is $1.3 million. The budget includes the following proposals:
We recommend the Legislature approve the request of $1,713,000 for the laundry facility working drawings and construction, $1,924,000 for the Holderman activity area construction, $2,994,000 for the Jefferson Hall Section L construction, and $737,000 contingent on completion of preliminary plans. The remaining projects are discussed below.
We withhold recommendation on $679,000 for the preliminary plans, working drawings, and construction to install an emergency alarm system in the Holderman Hospital and Annexes because the department has not provided adequate documentation to justify the project.
The budget includes $679,000 to complete preliminary plans, working drawings, and construction to install an emergency notification system in the Holderman Hospital and Annexes. The system will be designed to notify building occupants in case of fire, earthquake, or other emergencies. The department has referred to a State Fire Marshal citation from October 1997 noting that the existing system does not meet certain codes. According to the department, the hospital received a waiver to continue using the existing system through June 30, 1999.
No documentation has been provided regarding either the Fire Marshal citation or the waiver from the federal Health Care Financing Administration. This information is needed to assess the request. Furthermore, the department has not provided either a detailed cost estimate or project schedule to substantiate the funding requested. Consequently, we withhold recommendation on $679,000 for this project pending further documentation on project cost and scope of work.
We withhold recommendation on $421,000 for preliminary plans, working drawings, and construction for various improvements to the cemetery because the department has not provided detailed cost or scope information for the project.
The budget includes $421,000 to complete preliminary plans, working drawings, and construction for various improvements to the home's cemetery--including construction of an information kiosk, restroom, and maintenance shed. The cemetery was recently reactivated for burials. The department has also submitted a request for $773,000 in special repair funds under the support budget for restoration and repair of the cemetery. Thus, the department is proposing to spend a total of $1,194,000 to repair and upgrade the cemetery.
The department has not provided information detailing what improvements will be accomplished or how this work relates to the work under the proposed special repairs. Furthermore, the department has not provided supporting documentation for the amount requested in this proposal. Consequently, we withhold recommendation on $421,000 for capital improvements to the cemetery pending further budget and scope information.
We withhold recommendation on $190,000 for the preliminary plans and working drawings to inspect and renovate an existing water storage tank because the department has not provided adequate documentation to justify the project.
The budget includes $190,000 to complete preliminary plans and working drawings to test, inspect, and renovate an existing 1.25 million gallon water storage tank. The project will also install 4,500 feet of new 12-inch water line to service the tank. The estimated future cost of construction for the project is $1,263,000. The tank receives water from the existing water treatment plant for storage and serves the water distribution system of the home. The department reports that this project will improve water quality of the holding tank and ensure compliance with health standards.
The department has indicated a problem with water quality. However, no water quality testing information has been provided to indicate a problem. No information has been provided indicating that the Department of Health Services has raised concern over water quality issues at the home.
The proposal includes investigation of operational conditions, repair of structural systems, and disinfection of the tank. However, it is unclear if deficiencies with the tank exist because the department reports the tank is in good condition. Additional information is needed to substantiate the need for this work. Furthermore, the department has not provided cost information to substantiate either the current request or future cost of the project. Consequently, we withhold recommendation of $190,000 pending further information from the department to justify the request.