Supposedly set to be ready for occupancy in a month:
In response to a citizen’s question of the Local Finance Board wondering why a courthouse originally budgeted to to be ready for occupancy on December 19, 2014 at a cost of $33,380,000 wound up (as of now) set to be built April 30, 2017 at a cot of $44,997,581 Decotiis’ response continued to avoid the big questions:
Who messed up?
What about the bond on this project?
Is anything going to be done to reform the UCIA to curb these massive overages?
In this first of a series we will look in detail at those who are hired by Union County to provide outside services through check registry data (going back to 2004) and past countywatchers reporting to get a picture of how your tax money is being spent.
First up: Development Directions, LLC which has received over $54 million from Union County since 2004.
. 2017-220: Awarding a Professional Engineering Service Contract to T&M Associates of Middletown, New Jersey to provide ongoing LSRP Environmental Consulting Services associated with the Meisel Park Project, Springfield, for an amount not to exceed $49,600.00. (NJDEP Case 99-04-28-1512 and 01-08-29-1446-05; NJDEP Program Interest ID#t30838; Union County Engineering Project #201 1-030)
2017-222: Authorizing the County Manager to award a Professional Engineering Service Contract, through a Request for Proposal (RFP) process, to Alaimo Group Consulting Engineers, of Mt. HoUy, New Jersey to provide Design, Construction Administration and Inspection Services for the Emergency Generator-Department of Public Works (DPW) Facility, Scotch Plains, New Jersey for an amount not to exceed $85,420.00. (Union County Engineering Project Number 2013-028)
2017-223: Authorizing the County Manager to award a Professional Engineering Service Contract, through a Request for Proposal (RFP) process, to Maser Consulting, PA, of Red Bank, New Jersey to provide Engineering Design Services for Dam Repair Improvements for an amount not to exceed $82,108.00. (Union County Engineering Project Number 2016-043)
2017·239: Resolution amending Resolution 2008-46, a resolution amending the by-laws of the Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Public Advisory Committee, to reflect changes as per Union County Ordinance 755-2013 and the proper listing of the “labor” designation as per Resolution 110A-01.
2017·240: Re-appointing the following members to the Open Space, Recreation and Historic Preservation Trust Fund: Arthur Kobitz, Charles Eke, Michael DelSordi (public members) and Rose Checcio (democratic official) for a term beginning January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2019 and appointing Edward O’MaUey (public member) and Maria Carvalho (environmentalist) and Richard Capac (Business) for a term beginning January 1, 2015 through December 31,2017.
2017-225: Amending Resolution Number 2016-692, (BA#44-2014) a contract awarded through advertised public bidding in accordance with the Local Public Contracts Law, NJSA40A:11-1 et seq., to National Fence Systems, Inc., Avenel, New Jersey approving Change Order Number One (1) increasing the original contract amount by $85,000 for a new total contract amount not to exceed $324,003.98.
2017-227: Authorizing the County Manager to award the proposed contract obtained through advertised public bidding in accordance with the Local Public Contracts Law, NJSA40A:11-1 et seq: Department of Engineering, Public Works & Facilities Management, to Simplicity Engineering NE Inc., 249 Union Street, Westfield, MA 01085 for the purpose of providing a Hydraulic Mobile Trammel Screen in the amount of $295,400.
Is this really the best use of funds to help our blind and autistic citizens? A $650,000 hiking trail? It looks like it will be of far more benefit to those building it then those who might be using it.
2017-237: Authorizing the County Manager to award the proposed contract obtained through advertised public bidding in accordance with the Local Public Contracts Law, NJSA40A:11-1 et seq: Department of Parks & Recreation, Division of Engineering, Pavelec Brothers Golf Course Construction, Inc., of Nutley, New Jersey, for the Sensory Trail Improvements Watchung Reservation, Borough of Mountainside, County of Union, New Jersey, for an amount not to exceed $652,444.85. (Union County Engineering Project Number 2016-006).
According to NJ Open Government Notes, the Union County Prosecutor’s Office advised the Berkeley Heights Library Board of Trustees that it violated the Open Public Meetings Act (OPMA) by discussing contract negotiations during a nonpublic session with the other party to the contract in attendance.
The Berkeley Heights Library Board went into an executive session during their meeting of January 16, 2017 using the OPMA exception of “Contract Negotiations”, which is meant to be used only to negotiate strategy to use during the actual negotiations. The Berkeley Heights Library Board of Trustees allowed in members of the Town Council who represent the Counterparty, in this case the Town.
They discussed the $33,000,000 municipal building in a closed meeting removing a concerned and involved citizen from the meeting.
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