Bids Opened For Sewer Plant Project In The Plains

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Bids for improvements to The Plains sewage treatment plant were over the engineer's estimate, but it's still possible a contract can be awarded.

Construction bids from two companies — Righter Co. of Columbus and Kirk Brothers Co. of Alvada — were opened Tuesday by the Athens County Commissioners and the price quotes are currently being evaluated.

The project was bid in two parts, a base bid for most of the work and an alternate bid for some additional work. However, because of the prices that were quoted, the commissioners can only legally award a contract if they decide to do the entire project.

County Commission President Lenny Eliason said Rich Kasler, superintendent of the Athens County Water and Sewer District, is evaluating whether the county can afford to do both parts of the project and will make a recommendation.

Base bids were accepted for installation of a new influent pump station, a new head works tank and miscellaneous utility work. Bid as an alternate was modifying the existing chlorine disinfection tank and installing an ultra-violet disinfection system.

The base bids were all higher than the engineer's estimate of $693,000, and exceeded it by more than the allowable 10 percent. The county can accept bids that are no more than 10 percent over estimate. Kirk Brothers bid $877,000, and Righter bid $894,894.

However, both companies bid well under the $264,000 engineer's estimate for the ultra-violet disinfection system. Righter's quote was $140,700, while Kirk Brothers gave a price of $153,000.

According to the county's engineering consultant, the bids are still usable if the county decides to go forward with both parts of the project. The combined bids, while over estimate, are within 10 percent of the engineer's combined estimate of $957,000. Kirk Brothers was the apparent low bidder with a combined bid of $1.03 million, while Righter's bid was $4,700 more than that amount.

Kasler has said previously that the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is requiring the screening out of more non-biodegradable material. Work included in the base bid is intended to meet that requirement.