Town likely to let ceme­tery wall con­trac­tor back out

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - LOCAL NEWS - By Wil­liam J. Kem­ble news@free­manon­line.com

RHINEBECK, N.Y. » The Town Board ap­pears ready to let con­trac­tor Dean C. Ale Ex­ca­va­tion out of a $148,207.87 con­tract to re­pair a 300-foot sec­tion of a stone wall at the town ceme­tery.

Town Su­per­vi­sor El­iz­a­beth Spinzia said dur­ing a board meet­ing Mon­day that in­ac­cu­rate cost es­ti­mates for the work were pro­vided to the roughly dozen po­ten­tial bid­ders who at­tended a meet­ing about the project — a meet­ing that Ale did not at­tend.

Spinzia said the bid­ders were given a $300,000 es­ti­mate but that the ac­tual fig­ure was $150,000.

“All the bids came back at $300,000 ... ex­cept for one bid, and it was the only per­son who was not at the pre­bid meet­ing,” the su­per­vi­sor said. “So this per­son is the low­est bid and the only one who came in any­where near af­ford­able [for the town] and ... doesn’t want to do it be­cause he’s afraid he’s go­ing to lose his shirt.”

Spinzia said Ale asked to be let out of the agree­ment af­ter learn­ing other bid-

ders had got­ten an es­ti­mate

“If we do not re­turn his bond, he will do the job. But he [would] rather we re­turn his bond,” she said.

Ale could not be reached for com­ment Tues­day.

Spinzia said pro­vid­ing the es­ti­mate amounted to “poi­son­ing the well” and cre­ated a “de­ba­cle” for the town by es­sen­tially dou­bling the amount of most

bids.

Other than Dean C. Ale Ex­ca­va­tion, the bid­ders were TJR Ex­ca­vat­ing Con­trac­tors, Con-Tech Con­struc­tion Tech­nol­ogy, Leo Boice and Sons, Bast Hat­field Con­struc­tion, Pre­cise En­ter­prises II, C.G. Stone, Wil­liam J. Keller and Sons Con­struc­tion, and Sun Up En­ter­prises. Their bids ranged from a low of $205,000 to a high of $519,300.

Ceme­tery Com­mit­tee Chair­woman Suzanne Kelly pre­vi­ously said fund­ing

for the project would in- clude a $75,000 grant from the Rhinebeck-based Frost Foun­da­tion, $50,000 from the town and $10,000 from the group Friends of Rhine- beck Ceme­tery.

Town At­tor­ney War­ren Re­plan­sky said the town could re­quire Ale to do the job or for­feit a bond, which is 5 per­cent of the bid amount.

“He’s ob­li­gated,” Re­plan­sky said. “I never like to see a bid go to some­body who’s un­der­es­ti­mated the proj- ect.”

El­iz­a­beth Spinzia

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