DOWNEY - The City Council on Tuesday gave greater leeway to the city's Public Works department when it hires contractors for small-scale jobs without putting the project out to bid.Since 1996, most public works projects greater than $15,000 would be bid on by contractors and the City Council would select the "lowest responsible bidder." If no bids were received, or council members rejected the bids as unsatisfactory, and the project cost $30,000 or less, the city had the option of completing the work itself if deemed "urgent necessity for the preservation of life, health or property." Council members, however, agreed the city could save money by raising the limit for informal contracts to $23,000, or $46,000 if completed by the city. The city will realize the savings by reducing staff time involved in a formal bid process and costs in advertising, said assistant city manager John Oskoui. The project limit is only applicable to construction and improvement of public buildings, streets, drains, sewers, parks, utilities and playgrounds. It does not apply to maintenance and repair.
********** Published: January 12, 2012 - Volume 10 - Issue 39