2016-07-11 / Local News

Councilman wants extension on time for submitting bids

Ledger Staff Writer

CHARLES MATHIS CHARLES MATHIS The county’s bid practices came under fire from a councilman on Tuesday.

Cherokee County Councilman Charles Mathis said during Tuesday’s meeting the county should extend the length of time companies have to submit bids.

Mathis was upset the county planned to open bids for its C-fund contract and Ford Complex lighting project Aug. 18, less than three weeks after the county began advertising them June 29.

The county had scheduled a mandatory pre-bid conference for the projects next week but changed it to today (Friday, July 8).

As of Tuesday, only one contractor has picked up a bid package for each of the projects.

“We put these timelines so close,” Mathis said. “It’s not fair. We may be losing potential bidders.”

Mathis added there’s a feeling the county’s current bid practices favor “certain contractors.”

“I don’t like it,” Mathis told Cherokee County Acting Administrator Holland Belue.

Belue then told Mathis the county could extend the bid process, but several council members, including chairman Tim Spencer, told Belue to stick with the original bid length, especially for the roads, because of the criticism Spencer hears about the poor condition of the roads.

According to Belue, there is no specific length of time in the county procurement policy. The procurement policy only states the bid process should be long enough to “provide for sufficient competition.”

Typically, the bid length is between two to three weeks, Belue said.

Mandatory pre-bid conferences for contractors are often only required for more detailed projects, such as the spec building.

Belue said the pre-bid conferences are useful because they provide contractors with the same information at the same time for a project.

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