Friday, June 20, 2008

Town of New Hartford Comedy Hour...

condensed to 22 minutes.

The "Special" New Hartford Town Board Meeting lasted about 22 minutes. The main focus was to award the bid for part of the work to be done in and around the New Hartford Business Park and digging for water/sewer lines along Woods Highway.

Only one minor detail...they changed the bid specs AFTER they advertised and opened the bid. According to Highway Superintendent Roger Cleveland, since the town already has an Agreement for Bituminous Concrete Paving with BARRETT PAVING MATERIALS, INC, P. O. Box 400, Washington Mills, NY, it would be cheaper to let them do the paving instead of including it as part of the bid. Apparently Roger must have had an epiphany after they advertised for bids! Roger couldn't figure that out BEFORE the bid specs were written? Someone in the audience asked how much they would save and Roger threw out a nice round number...about $10,000.

Anyway, if you listen to the videotape of the meeting, Highway Superintendent Roger Cleveland said "no" in response to Councilman Reynolds question as to whether this change in the bid specs would make a difference in the bidding process.

Concerned Citizens is glad you asked the question, Councilman Reynolds, but we think you should be asking that question of the Town Attorney, Jerry Green. Isn't that what the town pays him $150 an hour for? Concerned Citizens would love to hear his answer. Want to go out on a limb Attorney Green and say "no problem; it is perfectly o.k. to change bid specs after the fact? It doesn't give the appearance of any impropriety".

Imagine, only one bid received for the $1 million plus contract...Fred Burrows Trucking & Excavating. Does anyone find it odd that only one bid was received and the town board went ahead and accepted the lone bid on a $1 million plus project and then went ahead and changed the bid specs? Are we to believe that there is no other company that would want to bid for this job? Wonder if there were other companies that might have bid if they didn't have to include an estimate for the paving part of the bid specs? Guess we will find out if we save any money when we see how much Barrett Paving charges the town for the paving versus the amount that Burrows estimated it would cost for him to sub-contract the paving part of the project.

Anyone notice that since Earle Reed has been Town Supervisor, Highway Superintendent Roger Cleveland can't seem to get even the most mundane jobs done without some kind of "quinky dink" coming into play? Why would that be?

Please take the time to watch the videotape. We will be doing at least one more blog regarding this "special" meeting. Stay tuned!

3 comments:

newhartfordpeople said...

WOW

glad it your town and not mine. someday there will be stories written in the history books about NH Government

Anonymous said...

I'm no lawyer but if someone submits a bid and the town changes the spec's it should have been rebid. Maybe Burrows will get the full amount and we'll be paying twice for the paving. It probably doesn't matter anymore though,I heard the tax base in NH has increased so much the triple "A" project won't even be felt by tax payers so maybe we can afford whatever the board wants...No problem

Anonymous said...

Make up the rulea as you go along seems to be the motto of this crew.

Shame on you Dave Reynolds for knowing that it isn't proper and keeping your mouth shut. You know the answer. Toss the bid and re-bid it the way you want it, without the paving.

And Dave, fyi it's Roger Cleveland that has to do what you say, not the other way.