Albert Rukwaro
Special to The Gardner News
Gardner may pursue legal action against an excavating company that failed to notify the city on time of its inability to perform previously contracted work. The company was contracted to de-water and clean-out of a pond at the Hillsdale Water Treatment Plant.
Ryan Denk, city attorney, told the council during a meeting Sept. 3 that he was looking into pursuing legal action against Walter Excavating Inc, a Paola corporation which was awarded a four-year service contract by the city in October 2016.
The contract paid the company $53,000 per year for the service.
According to Gonz Garcia, utilities director, the company cleaned out the ponds for the last three years. However, when contacted by the city for this year’s cleanout, the company notified the city it would not be able to do the work ‘due to other commitments in Lee’s Summit.’”
“Because of their delay in notice, the city was placed in the position it is in now of having to find a replacement contractor,” said Garcia.
He said the pond scheduled for cleanup is at the location of the new water treatment expansion, and it needs to be de-watered and cleaned out before October 15.
Garcia said that due to the time constraints, a formal competitive bid process waiver was requested, and the city solicited and received three bids for the work.
Staff recommended that the contract be awarded to the lowest bidder, Cohorst Enterprises Inc, for $123,900 which is $70,900 more that the contract to Walter Excavating.
“Cohorst Enterprises has provided emergency sewer repairs for the city for many years, and we are confident that they will provide the city with a competent pond clean-out service,” said Garcia.
He said the 2019 Water Treatment Outsourced Services budget for sludge removal could absorb the additional costs.
During the same meeting, Cohorst Enterprises was also awarded a $60,244 contract to construct a crosswalk at 183rd street and Mulberry Road.