Council rejects pool bids, starts bidding process again

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The Mobridge City Council, Monday, June 2, voted to reject all bids for the construction of the swimming pool, to rebid the project in 45 days and to extend the opening date to the summer of 2016.

Jay Koch of Helm’s and Associates of Aberdeen told the council on Monday that despite two weeks of efforts to reduce the cost of the project with the current timeline, all those working on the value- engineering could not get the cost below $3.2 million with the current completion date.

Koch told the council he had worked with the architects and staff of Sharpe Construction in Pierre to find areas where changes could be made to cut back the original bids. On Thursday, May, 22, bids were opened with both contractors’ bids coming in at more than $3.5 million. The contractors, Sharpe Enterprises, Inc., of Pierre and JDH Construction of Aberdeen, would be using the same pool building company.

Koch told the council that information he received when calling other contractors was that they did not bid the project because of the tight timeline and they could have made lower bids, but for the June 1, 2015 project deadline. He told the council the contractors said the project could probably have not been completed and the pool ready to open until sometime in July of 2015. He said that would have left short season and created staffing problems at the pool.

“You probably would have had to hire lifeguards for the summer and paid them to do something else until the pool opened,” he said.

With the new completion date of May 15, 2016, Koch told the council more contractors would bid the project, more pool contractors would be available and he believed the bids would be lower than the two they had received. He said more than likely the pool would be  completed by July 2015, but it would be too late for the summer season.

Mobridge Mayor Jamie Dietterle said the group had worked hard to bring the costs inline with the $2.5 million  estimate, but could not make any more cuts to the project without giving the community less of what they were told they would get when the bond issue was approved.

“The pool committee and finance committee have met with Mr. Koch and the representatives from Sharpe and we worked with the value-engineering and put in endless hours trying to make this work for the city,” said Dietterle. “With the bond money, fundraising money and looking at options for using some city funding, we are still not at that point as much as they have done to help us. I just don’t think we want to do this project as is right now.”

“To get it (the project cost) any lower, we would be making cuts that would not be in the best interest of Mobridge,” Koch said. “The pool committee, who have worked so hard on this project, do not want to take away any more than what they promised this community.”

Dietterle said the city did not want to take any more away from the pool design and what the committee tried to do. He said the city wants to do this the right way.

Koch said by changing the completion date, there will be more competitive bidding and more builders involved.

The council approved rejecting the bids, approved a redesign (with some value-engineering  changes) and rebid of the project within 45 days.

Koch said he is currently working with the architect to lower the redesign fees and with his firm to waive anymore engineering fees.

He also said he wanted to publicly commend Sharpe Enterprises for working with the groups to lower the cost of the project. Dietterle said the company worked hard to help the city and worked with the groups to get the costs down in order for the project to move forward.

 

Bond issue

With the bids rejected, Toby Morris of Dougherty and Company, LLC., of Pierre told the board that the company would be ready to move into the bond market with in two weeks. He said even though they have approved the bond issue, the company would not go into the market until they get the approval of the city. He said in August, if there are going to be changes in the market, that is the time it would happen. He also said with the mid-term elections in November, changes could happen at that time. Morris said the city has already passed the resolution and when they are ready to  move forward, if the market stays stable, he will wait until the city is ready to move forward.

If any changes are on the horizon, the city can approve the issuance of bonds at that time to lock in the lower rate and get as much funding for the approved bond as possible.

 

Tax property

Walworth County State’s Attorney Jamie Hare, representing the county requested the city join with the county in demolishing a home at 302 Second Avenue West. He said the county sheriff had deemed the home as not worth saving. He said the county would work with the city and split the cost of the demolition. Councilman Randy Carlson asked what happened to having the committee that was formed to deal with such properties look at the these types of situations to evaluate the value? He asked why the city had not been informed that the property was in need of demolition? Hare said because there had been some incidences in the building and the sheriff had been in the building. He said the sheriff said there was need a to do something with the property and had secured the property to keep squatters from living there.

The council approved the project.

Hare also said the county is still in possession of part of the property on which the east play park has been constructed. He said the county would like to deed that land back to the city. Since they had property on the land and were maintaining the property.

The council approved accepting the deed.

The council also discussed purchasing a half a block of property behind While’s Flooring. There is an empty home, and a storage building on the lots.

According to the discussion, the land is zoned comercial, but would also be large enough to build town homes, apartments or duplexes on the land. By owning that property, the city would have control of what will be built there. City attorney Rick Cain will contact the land owners and inquire about their willingness to sell the land to the city. He will also do a check for liens on the property before the city moves forward with the process.

– Katie Zerr –

 

 

 

 

and get as much funding for the approved bond as possible.

 

Tax property

Walworth County State’s Attorney Jamie Hare, representing the county requested the city join with the county in demolishing a home at 302 Second Avenue West. He said the county sheriff had deemed the home as not worth saving. He said the county would work with the city and split the cost of the demolition. Councilman Randy Carlson asked what happened to having the committee that was formed to deal with such properties look at the these types of situations to evaluate the value? He asked why the city had not been informed that the property was in need of demolition? Hare said because there had been some incidences in the building and the sheriff had been in the building. He said the sheriff said there was need a to do something with the property and had secured the property to keep squatters from living there.

The council approved the project.

Hare also said the county is still in possession of part of the property on which the east play park has been constructed. He said the county would like to deed that land back to the city. Since they had property on the land and were maintaining the property.

The council approved accepting the deed.

The council also discussed purchasing a half a block of property behind While’s Flooring. There is an empty home, and a storage building on the lots.

According to the discussion, the land is zoned comercial, but would also be large enough to build town

homes, apartments or duplexes on the land. By owning that property, the city would have control of what will be built there. City attorney Rick Cain will contact the land owners and inquire about their willingness to sell the land to the city. He will also do a check for liens on the property before the city moves forward with the process.

– Katie Zerr –

 

 

 

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