New com­mit­tee to re­view award­ing more lo­cal con­tracts



— Af­ter sev­eral years of say­ing that lo­cal com­pa­nies need a bet­ter shot at get­ting busi­ness from large con-


struc­tion con­tracts awarded to Ce­cil County projects, out­go­ing County Coun­cil­man Robert Hodge’s pro­posal to set up a Lo­cal Busi­ness Ini­tia­tive Com­mit­tee to re­view the bid­ding pol­icy won ap- proval Tues­day night.

How­ever, Hodge ab­stained from the 4-1 vote for ap­proval, cit­ing his ap­point­ment as a mem­ber of the com­mit­tee.

Other mem­bers ap­pointed Tues­day in­clude in­com­ing Coun­cil­man Bob Mef­fley, Elk­ton Cham­ber and Al­liance Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Mary Jo Jablon­ski, Susque­hanna Work­force Net­work Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Bruce Eng­land, Ce­cil County Pub­lic Li­brary Di­rec­tor Mor­gan Miller, Ce­cil County Pub­lic Schools Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor for Sup­port Ser­vices Perry Wil­lis, Ce­cil County Bud­get Man­ager Re­becca Anderson, Ce­cil County Pro­cure­ment, Fleet and Leas­ing Man­ager Pete Bie­niek; Ce­cil County De­part­ment of Pub­lic Works Di­rec­tor Scott Flani­gan, Clark De­sign Group owner Mark Clark, lo­cal con­trac­tor Eric Grubb, lo­cal excavation and de­mo­li­tion com­pany owner John Cochran, lo­cal en­gi­neer David Strouss and a mem­ber of the county’s eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment com­mis­sion.

The res­o­lu­tion adopted Tues­day night charges the com­mit­tee to look at prac­tices of other lo­cal gov­ern­ments that en­cour­age the hir­ing of lo­cal busi­nesses and em­ploy­ees, as­sess strengths and weak­nesses and sub­mit a pro­posal to the county coun­cil by June 1.

Hodge’s plan has been vet­ted by the coun­cil for the last sev­eral weeks.

“I fa­vor this, but I’m afraid this may make it more costly to do busi­ness here,” out­go­ing Coun­cil­man Alan McCarthy said Tues­day night. “That’s why I’d like a fi­nan­cial im­pact study.”

McCarthy, a Repub­li­can, faces Demo­crat Wayne Tome in the gen­eral elec­tion race for county ex­ec­u­tive.

Hodge said the pos­si­bly of in­creased cost would be some­thing the com­mit­tee ex­am­ines.

Coun­cil­man Dan Sch­neck­en­burger also spoke in fa­vor of the for­ma­tion of a com­mit­tee to look into the pos­si­bil­ity of giv­ing more busi­ness to lo­cal firms.

“I think this is a great idea,” he said.

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