Kraus-Anderson awarded contract for Bemidji events center construction management
BEMIDJI The Bemidji City Council hired Kraus-Anderson for construction management of the events center after rejecting a motion to table the contract until mid-November. The motion on Monday to approve was 4-2 with Councilors Nancy Erickson and R...
The Bemidji City Council hired Kraus-Anderson for construction management of the events center after rejecting a motion to table the contract until mid-November.
The motion on Monday to approve was 4-2 with Councilors Nancy Erickson and Roger Hellquist against. The motion to table failed 2-4 as Erickson and Hellquist voted in favor. Council Barb Meuers was absent.
Hellquist, who made the motion to table the matter until after the Nov. 4 election, said he meant no disrespect to Kraus-Anderson, the committee members who helped select the firm, or the process that was undertaken.
"I have no problem with Kraus-Anderson being awarded the contract," he said. "All I'm asking for is that we wait two, two and a half weeks."
With four seats on the City Council, including the mayoral position, up for election, there is a possibility that the council's position on the events center could change from its usual 4-3 split.
Hellquist suggested that action be held until after the election.
He said he was "wary" about entering in a contract at this point.
Councilor Jerry Downs said there is no "Plan B" under consideration for the south shore development, should the events center project be scrapped.
To stop the project now is going to cost the city more in the long run, he said.
Mayor Richard Lehmann added that even if the council majority changes, newly elected council members would not take office until January.
Of 12 proposals received for the construction management position, five were interviewed as finalists: Kraus-Anderson, Mortenson Construction, Construction Analysis & Management Inc. and Bossardt Corporation.
Councilor Nancy Erickson said Kraus-Anderson's fees were not the lowest, noting that City Manager John Chattin reported that the low bid was $1,359,000.
Chattin said Kraus-Anderson had the second-lowest bid.
Two of the five finalists, including the low bidder, were eliminated immediately during the interview process, Chattin said. Committee members did not think the low bidder had enough experience or the number of people needed for the project.
The committee that interviewed the finalists consisted of Chattin, Bill Merrill with Leo A. Daly, City Engineer Craig Gray, engineer Mike Karvakko, architect Richard Rude and local developer Steve Inkel.
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