By NANETTE LoBIONDO GALLOWAY
LONGPORT – Last month, the Board of Commissioners rejected all five bids received for rehabilitation of the baby blue water tower that smiles down on the borough because they exceeded the engineer’s estimate for the job.
Among them was the lowest bid, which had a “material defect” in the paperwork submitted for review. Although the defect was only in the wording, the borough agreed to reject all bids and readvertise for a second time.
A second round of bids received on Oct. 14 revealed the same low-bid contractor submitted new paperwork with the same material defect. Solicitor Michael Affanato advised the board it could reject all bids and readvertise for a third time or award to the second lowest bidder.
The board agreed to accept the second-lowest bid from Allied Painting, Inc. of Cherry Hill, so the work could be completed by the time the summer season rolls around and water usage is at its highest.
“The water tower has to be taken offline, so it can be completed by summer,” he said.
Bridgeway Associates Corp. of Harrison offered $708,300 in the base bid amount and $42,700 for Alternate bid A, and $101,300 for Alternate bid B, totaling $852,300, but was disqualified for the error.
Allied’s second-lowest bid totaled $875,700, with the highest bid coming from U.S. Tank Painting of Millstone Township at $1,084,000.
The board agreed to accept Allied’s base bid and alternate bid A, and awarded it a $827,700 contract.
The board also awarded a $1,648,085 contract to Charles Marandino, LLC of Milmay for roadway and drainage improvements on Atlantic Avenue. Marandino was the lowest of three bids received on Oct. 14. Others bids included South State, Inc. of Bridgeton at $1,770,000 and the high bid from Mount Construction Co., Inc. of Berlin at $1,843,417.
In other business, the board appointed Erin Schiavo to serve on the Longport Library Board for five years, and over the objections of resident Bob English who has challenged the board repeatedly, the commission finalized its shared municipal court agreement with Margate.
English said the cost of sharing the municipal court with Margate will be 90% more than the county would charge if Longport joined the newly formed Atlantic County Central Municipal Court System.
Also, Administrator A. Scott Porter said the board would vote at the next meeting on approving $256,000 or more in contracts to replace the playground equipment and resurface the base of the playground next to Lifeguard Headquarters on Atlantic and 33rd avenues.
Porter also said the borough would soon install an electric vehicle charging station in the parking lot behind Borough Hall near the vending machine, where the closest electrical service is available.
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