Contractors picket new Price Chopper

More than $646,000 is owed to contractors who worked for over a year to ensure the new Price Chopper on Central Avenue would be opened by Monday, June 1, according to Chip Kronau, president of Kronau Construction and Equipment Inc.

Help us get OUR green, read fliers being handed out Monday night by more than a dozen subcontractors and contractors who worked to lay concrete, put in new sidewalks and install other exterior features at the Price Chopper in Colonie Plaza, at 1892 Central Ave.

According to Kronau, WP Realty, the company that manages Colonie Plaza, had paid the contractors for their service up until September, at which point contractors did not receive money for more than three months of work.

The amount Kronau's company is owed amounts to over $646,000, he said. In turn, Kronau said he owes more than $500,000 to the subcontractors he hired to complete the job.

In consulting with his attorney, Kronau said, he had learned that while WP Realty had pledged to pay the contractors, early on in the project, perhaps even before the contractors broke ground, the company had run out of financing for the project but let the work proceed.

Kronau said WP Realty told the contractors they could sue them, if they wanted.

"We're left with no choice," Kronau said.

Representatives from WP Realty were unavailable for comment.

Pickets were still standing outside Price Chopper as of Tuesday afternoon, June 2. Marc Micare, a subcontractor who worked on the project, said the goal of the picket is to pressure Price Chopper into pressuring WP Realty to compensate the workers.

"We do a lot of work for the Town of Colonie," Micare said, of the disappointment he has with the way this situation has been handled.

Tuesday morning, Kronau told The Spotlight that aside from what is owed by WP Realty, Price Chopper owed him about $320,000, which he said it had hinted it would not pay as long as the pickets continued. Price Chopper had hired the contractors separately to finish exterior work more quickly in order to ensure the store could open June 1.

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