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Low bids for landfill section will save county $2 million

May 04, 2007|by KATE S. ALEXANDER

Washington County will spend about $2 million less than expected to build the next section of its Forty West Landfill near Huyetts Crossroads.

Deputy Chief Engineer Robert J. Slocum said the county received three bids for the "cell 4" section of the landfill and all of the bids were less than both the amount budgeted by the county and the engineer estimate.

County Administrator Gregory Murray said the $6.1 million budgeted by the commissioners for the current fiscal year was a "worst case scenario" amount.

He explained that the county allotted additional funds to avoid having the project come in over budget.

The county received three bids for the construction project with the highest at $3.7 million by Pavex Inc. of Camp Hill, Pa., and the lowest at $3 million by Kinsley Construction Inc. of Timonium, Md.

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Slocum said the engineering department is investigating the bidders for experience and will make a recommendation to the board May 22.

While the county does not know exactly why the bids came in about $1.3 million lower than the engineer estimate made by URS Corporation of Cleveland, Slocum assumes it is a mix of timing and market conditions.

"With all the bids being less, it is a bargain for the county," he said. "The unit prices for each section (of the landfill) have been about the same."

This is the fourth section in phase one of the 186-acre landfill to be bid by the county.

Murray said the lower bids will affect user fees for users of the landfill.

The bonds issued by the county for the project will be paid with user fees not tax dollars, he said.

Next week, the county will go to apply for the bond money, and Murray said it will ask for about $2 million less in self-supporting bonds.

Slocum said cell 4 will hold 14.2 acres of waste and will take about three years to fill.

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