City loosens ties to construction firm

first_img“That is a part of business,” Willdan said. Mayor John Tran, who has said for several months that he thinks Willdan overcharges the city, said one of the reasons for the change is because of a potential conflict of interest regarding the Garvey Bridge, which is undergoing a $10.8 million upgrade project. Willdan performed the geological study as well as construction management services. The city is being sued by resident Jim Flournoy over the construction of the bridge. “The Garvey Bridge project is not the impetus, but it is one of the factors,” interim City Manager Oliver Chi said. “Members of the council have requested knowing whether our current way of providing services is the best way of doing things.” Cutting billing rates is among the leading motivators for the change, Chi said. Costs have gone down as a result of renegotiating, Chi said. Last year’s budget for building and safety costs to Willdan was $1.1 million, Chi said. For the 2007-08 budget, that number was reduced to $895,000. “Those are the kinds of efficiencies that we can continue,” Chi said. The Garvey Bridge project will cost nearly $12 million. Of that, Willdan will get $1.8 million. Chi said existing construction management staff “shouldn’t worry” about their employment with the city. “The intent isn’t to force Willdan out,” Chi said. “What they should be thinking about is, how do we provide a better service to Rosemead at a better rate and price.” [email protected] (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2477160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! ROSEMEAD – A 26-year-old contract could be on the line now that the City Council is seeking bids for its construction management services. Rosemead has utilized Willdan Associates for all construction management related services since 1981. The city also contracts with Willdan for engineering and building services. “Willdan is very capable and has provided these services to the city for many years,” a staff report submitted by Brian Saeki stated. “It could be beneficial to the city to have two or three firms available to provide this service.” Dave Willdan, president and founder of the 40-year-old Anaheim-based company, had only limited comment on the city’s decision to seek other bids. last_img

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