Bronson officials: wastewater bids too high

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By Mark Scohier, Staff writer

The Town of Bronson will have to make accommodations to help cover costs of the upcoming wastewater expansion project.

Of the six bids that recently came back from companies that would perform construction, all were higher than the more than $2 million allotted for the cost of the project, according to Town Clerk Kelli Brettel at Monday night’s council meeting.

The lowest bidder, at $2,414,561.71, is a company called Commercial Industrial Corp. The projected cost from the company is about $219,000 more than town engineering firm Mittuaer and Associates had initially projected the cost to be. 

But representatives with the firm told the council that the initial cost to construct the project was estimated a bit high and could be amended in the budget. 

Mittauer representative Greg Lang said that, for example, the town wouldn’t need as many soil boring tests as were initially detailed. “We don’t see that as an issue here in Bronson,” he said.

The higher bids would have to be rejected, according to engineer Jason Shepler, and then, with a budget amendment approved by Town Attorney Steven Warm and approval from grant funder U.S. Department of Agriculture, the town would be free to negotiate with the lowest bidder.

Shepler said the only other option would be to reduce the scope of the project.

The council unanimously approved the request to move forward with a budget amendment.