County commission to seek new bids on fire station paint project

Updated: Sep 29, 2021

MOUND CITY – After postponing a decision last week the Linn County Commission revisited the paint bidding process for the Linn County fire stations on Monday, Aug. 30. A week earlier they questioned the low bid of $40,000 to paint four fire stations.

Last week, Barlet presented commissioners with an unopened bid from Insco Industries, Shawnee, Kan., that arrived at his office after the deadline. The other two bids were from Pinnacle Painting for $92,820 and Gary Pemberton for $80,000. Both companies are from La Cygne.

Pinnacle bid $21,100 each on the Parker and Blue Mound stations. On Mound City, the bid was $28,020 and on Pleasanton $22,600.

Pemberton bid $22,000 on both Pleasanton and Mound City, and $18,000 on both Blue Mound and Parker.

The La Cygne and Prescott fire stations are around 15 years old and do not need painting at this time.

This week, Linn County Fire Chief Doug Barlet reminded that commissioners that they wanted a week or two to think about the paint bids for the fire stations and asked if they had any more questions about the bids.

Linn County Commissioner Jim Johnson said that he would like to know what the county was paying for in square footage and if there was a guarantee from the paint company.

Johnson said that he was curious because some buildings received the same bids but were different sizes. He wanted to know the cost per square foot for each building.

Barlet said he would get that information.

James told Barlet to tell the Linn County Fire Board that he was the one who had the beef with the cost of painting the buildings.

Barlet said he was good with leaving the buildings the way they were although metal siding would probably have to be replaced in the future.

James asked if there was another type of paint that did not cost so much.

Barlet said that he was not an expert on that and that is why he had a Sherwin-Williams representative have a look at it.

James said that he wanted to get information on another type of paint. He said he had talked to other contractors and the one who was late in putting in a bid and they said that nobody could guarantee paint lasting that long.

Barlet said he would throw out the present bids and put in new specifications for the paint. Barlet asked what company the commission would like to use for the specs.

James asked Linn County Counselor Gary Thompson if they could just rebid the job and still hold the present bids.

Thompson said a letter could be written to the contractors of the present bids stating that they were welcome to rebid on the different product but would it also be okay if they kept their bids on the first specs.

Johnson asked how contractors were notified of projects. Barlet said he published it in two news media including the official paper and also notified people that had bid before.

Johnson asked if there was a list of contractors for the county.

Thompson said there was not at present, but the county could establish a list of contractors. The commission could establish a policy to have a list of approved contractors, he added.

Thompson, who divulged that he painted many barns in the area when he was in college, said that applying three coats of paint used a considerable amount of labor.

Barlet said that since he knew nothing about painting, the commissioners might want to turn this process over to Rick Castle in the building maintenance department.

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