YOUNGSTOWN Board awards streets project

The city also refused to hire the apparent low bidder last year for the resurfacing program.
YOUNGSTOWN -- The city's board of control threw out the apparent low bid on its street resurfacing project, saying it was not the best bid.
Today, the board awarded the project to resurface 58 city streets this summer to McCourt Construction Co. of Akron, which submitted a bid of $922,079, more than $135,000 higher than the apparent low bid of $787,061 turned in by Romano Paving & amp; Excavating Inc. of Bessemer, Pa.
Romano's bid was cast aside based on the recommendation of Carmen Conglose Jr., the city's deputy director of public works.
Reasons: In a letter to the board, Conglose wrote that Romano's bid should not be considered for these reasons:
* The company's performance when it was awarded the city's resurfacing bid in 1999. Romano was found in default for one part of the program and never completed the second phase of the project, Conglose wrote.
The city charged the company $30,000 in penalties for streets not paved in 1999. Also, the city passed over Romano for the street work last year even though the company was the lowest bidder by $1,700. As they did today, city officials said last year that Romano's proposal was not the best bid.
* Romano refused to provide certified financial statements as well as a current Ohio Department of Transportation precertification as required in the bid specifications.
* The city's public works department had concerns about the company's handing a job "the size, scope and complexity" of the city resurfacing program after reviewing a list of projects Romano has performed during the past two years.
Wally Romano of Romano Paving could not be reached this morning to comment.
Besides Romano and McCourt, the only other bid came from Northern Ohio Paving Co. of Hillsville, Pa., with a $935,260 proposal.
Of the $922,079 cost of paving the city streets, $550,000 will come from the city's federal money. The work should begin in about three weeks and be finished by the end of August.

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