The Camdenton Board of Aldermen want an explanation for additional, unexpected billing from an engineering firm contracted for sidewalk projects along US 54.

The Camdenton Board of Aldermen want an explanation for additional, unexpected billing from an engineering firm contracted for sidewalk projects along US 54.

Crawford, Murphy & Tilly, Inc. has requested a supplemental agreement for $10,181.86 for TAP project 9900(563) and $10,191.86 for TAP project 9900(529) “due to an underestimation of time and cost for inspection services and engineering services by the engineer CMT,” according to a staff memo from City Administrator Jeff Hancock.

“I just want to understand why we’re agreeing to pay them more for these services that we contracted to them?” Alderwoman Sandy Osborn questioned.

On Feb. 21, 2017 the city of Camdenton received seven bids and awarded a contract to Hessling Construction, Inc. for the amount of $569,225.97, which was the lowest bid. The highest bid the city received was for $1,060,851.70

“The Engineer’s Opinion of Probable Construction Cost on this project was $656,322.70 and as a result of the Hessling contract we originally estimated that the City would save a minimum of $100,000 in Transportation Funds within this year’s budget,” Hancock wrote.

The two projects, sidewalk upgrades to west and east US 54, are funded through an 80/20 matching Transportation Alternative Program Grant administered by the Missouri Department of Transportation. A total of 80 percent of the estimate submitted with the grant application will be reimbursed to the City of Camdenton through MoDOT, according to Hancock.

“The City of Camdenton is responsible for the remaining 20 percent and any overages and unexpected costs,” according to the memo. “At that time it was anticipated that with no additional unforeseen expenses the City would provide $154,826.97 from the Transportation Fund toward the project.”

At a meeting earlier in July, aldermen approved a request by Hessling Construction for an extension of time for the project that was initially supposed to be completed on June 30, 2017 to a new completion date of Aug. 16, 2017.

Hancock informed the board that he has told Hessling Construction they will be responsible for covering the cost of a power line cut on Laker Drive that has caused the left turn signal to be shut down for approximately the last month. Hancock said the cost would be $8,000 and Hessling would have to sub-contract out the work, which has not been completed at this time.

“The biggest concern is getting them to complete the project by Aug. 16. The point is if you’re concerned about this we can hold this up and ask for an explanation,” Hancock said. “All I’m saying is I personally want the work to get done.”

Osborn asked city staff to supply her with the original contracts agreed to with MoDOT, CMT and Hessling to figure out if some sort of retainer for construction was built in that wouldn’t leave the city on the hook for the additional bills.

City Attorney Phil Morgan said he wasn’t too familiar with the particular details of these projects, but did find the request curious.

“I think you either do it or you don’t do it. If you do it, then it’s done,” Morgan said when asked by Osborn if the city could possibly recoup the costs if they decided to go ahead and pay the bills and then contest the charge afterward.

Osborn made a motion to table the supplemental agreement request until receiving a more in-depth explanation and justification from CMT. Alderman Gary Shepherd seconded the motion which was unanimously approved by the board.