New Scotland officials are eyeing town employees to complete a portion of the New Salem Water District project after one contract garnered no interest.
The New Scotland Town Board awarded two contracts Wednesday, Aug. 27, tied to the New Salem Water District Water Distribution and Storage Project. The contract covering the most extensive work was awarded to Casale Construction, the low bidder, for almost $2.47 million. The only bidder for electrical work, Stilsing Electric, was awarded a contract totaling $75,000. Both of the bids awarded fell around projections.
The contract failing to garner any bids generally consisted of plumbing improvements to allow installation of a booster pump system in an existing town-owned building. Town Supervisor Tom Dolin said the plumbing consisted of roughly $3,500 worth labor.
“The problem basically is it’s a huge amount of paperwork for a very small amount of work,” Bruce Secor, an engineer working for the town, said. “Wicks Law requires that we break this thing up into three contracts.”
Dolin on Friday, Sept. 12, said the town is going to see if its employees are able to complete the plumbing work. If the work can’t be done in-house then it will solicit proposals from at least two plumbers, according to Dolin.
The town will purchase the materials required regardless of who does the work. The original contract had the company purchasing materials.
The new water district, which generally encompasses the hamlet of New Salem, will serve about 170 customers. The Town of Bethlehem serves around 75 of those customers, with the remaining being new taps. New Salem’s district will connect to Bethlehem’s pipeline along Route 85.
The cost of the project cannot exceed $3.05 million, along with Bethlehem contributing an additional $152,000 towards construction.
New Scotland and Bethlehem also reached a 30-year inter-municipal water supply agreement for the district last summer.
New Scotland can purchase up to 11 million gallons of water annually at the rate of $2.27 per 1,000 gallons under the agreement. The rate will also increase annually per the change in the consumer price index. Additional water up to 13 million gallons annually can be purchased at twice the normal rate.
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