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County executive says Bobby Ray bid too low
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The county Financial Management Committee gave almost unanimous approval for on a bid for Bobby Ray Elementary’s renovation and expansion project.

Making the vote less than perfect was Warren County Executive Herschel Wells, who voted against awarding the bid to FTM Contracting.

“I can’t approve something when someone is $600,000 low,” said Wells, in explaining why he voted against awarding the bid to FTM. “There’s a mistake somewhere.”

FTM’s base bid was $2.4 million. The Warren County Board of Education unanimously approved the bid.

Board members added four alternate projects at a cost of $348,000, upping that price to $2.74 million. An electrical upgrade that was bid separately was also accepted at $142,550. Combined, the project has a price tag of $2.89 million.

Causing concern is the difference between FTM’s base bid and those submitted by Sain Construction and Romach. Both those company’s base bids were around $3 million, without any additional projects included.

Commission Terry Bell attempted to quell any concerns by stating, “If we get the bond, we are guaranteed.”

A surety bond is a contract that ensures obligations will be met. Specifically, an insurance company will guarantee that FTM Contracting can fulfill its obligations to Warren County Schools. If FTM Contracting does not, the insurance company will cover any resulting damages or losses. 
“That’s a good price, if you get what you’re asking for,” said Road Superintendent Levie Glenn.

FTM Contracting was contacted by Upland Design Group architect Allen Hill. It provided a confirmation letter standing by its bid.

Committee members voted 6-1 to award the bid to FTM Contracting. The electrical upgrade bid from Warren Mechanical for $142,550 gained unanimous approval.

Approval by the full Warren County Commission is not required, meaning the project is a go.