CLINTON — One of the hot decisions on Tuesday’s City Council agenda has been delayed, but according to Clinton Fire Chief Mike Brown, there’s reason to believe Clinton will settle on a fire boat bid during its first July meeting.
When weighing in on awarding the bid, Ward 3 Councilman Ed O’Neill motioned to table the discussion in order to clarify some issues he found with the process. The council voted unanimously to do so.
Two of the four bids were disqualified because they were either incomplete or did not fulfill requirements of the request for proposal. Of the two remaining bids, Lake Assault boats was the lowest at $493,100, all of which Brown said will be grant funded.
O’Neill didn’t go into detail about what was unclear, nor would he comment further on the matter. But on Thursday, the city released a statement authored by city attorney firm Lynch Dallas explaining the delay.
“Having investigated the matter, the City concludes the handling of the bid offers by City staff was in compliance with the law,” read the statement. “Two bidders were disqualified, one for failure to submit a sealed bid as directed, and another because the bid on its face did not reference a boat of the required dimensions and because it did not include the CBRNE features outlined in the specifications, which were required by the terms of the federal grant received by the City.
“Both of the disqualified bids were also higher in actual dollars than the winning bid,” the statement continued. “The resolution was tabled at Tuesday night’s Council meeting because the reasons for the disqualifications were not clear to Council members.”
The matter will reappear on the July 8 agenda, according to City Administrator Jessica Kinser.
In April, the fire department test ran a Lake Assault boat similar to the one the city will ultimately receive. Brown said the company has been “very helpful.”
When asked if delaying the matter four weeks would present problems, Brown said it won’t create too many dilemmas although the city is requiring a deadline for the boat to be ready.
“Part of the bid document was it had to be delivered by October 15, no later,” Brown said. “(Tabling) will make it tougher to get it done, but it’ll still get done.”