Harrison chooses higher bid for sidewalk ramp work
Harrison commissioners are not going with the lowest bidder for more handicapped-accessible sidewalk ramps in the township.
Ron Gillette Inc. submitted the lowest bid for the work, but the commissioners awarded the contract to the second-lowest bidder, Santamaria Landscaping and Cement Contractors.
Commissioners accepted Santamaria’s $20,832 bid for four ramps in the Natrona Heights area at Liberty Avenue and Broadview Boulevard, and at Idaho Avenue and Broadview Boulevard.
A state grant is paying for the work.
Gillette’s bid was almost $5,500 less, at $15,340.
Township Engineer Raymond Antonelli Jr. told commissioners that Gillette was not a responsible bidder because of problems with the company’s work on 39 ramps in the Natrona area, where Gillette had two previous contracts totaling about $81,000.
The first contract, about $39,000, was for 18 ramps, with all but two along River Avenue. The second, about $42,000, was for 21 ramps at various locations. All work was finished in August.
Antonelli said there were problems with the quality of Gillette’s work. Some ramps had to be redone, and Antonelli said the company was uncooperative.
John Gillette, vice president of Ron Gillette Inc., declined to comment until he could speak with an attorney and review the minutes of the commissioners’ meeting.
Township Commissioner Robin Bergstrom abstained from the vote on the contract because she has a family relationship to Gillette.
It was not known when Santamaria would work on the ramps in the Natrona Heights area. Because of the expected weather problems, the work may not be done until spring, Antonelli said.
Brian C. Rittmeyer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, [email protected] or via Twitter .