Barooga builder Darrell Bowden says he is disappointed with a Berrigan Shire Council decision to award a construction tender to an ‘‘out-of-town’’ construction company.
Mr Bowden had tendered for the new Barooga Recreation Reserve grandstand but was overlooked.
Berrigan Shire director technical services Fred Exton confirmed the ‘‘preferred tender’’ would go to Kennedy Builders, which is based in Mulwala, for $741,000.
While not conceding it was the only reason, Mr Exton and Berrigan Shire Mayor Bernard Curtin admitted price difference was a major factor in the tender not being awarded to a ‘local’ contractor.
Mr Bowden said while he could understand where the shire was coming from regarding price, he still wanted to highlight that council should do its best to keep work within the shire.
The local contractor, who does the majority of his work in Berrigan and Moira (Victoria) shires, described the situation as ‘‘unfortunate’’.
‘‘I just think in the long run that by keeping it local it will be more beneficial to the local economy,’’ Mr Bowden said.
‘‘The money would be put back into the town.
‘‘One good commercial job can keep a business afloat.
‘‘In the shire’s defence, I think this is the first time they have awarded a tender outside of the shire.
‘‘(But) the weighting system should be a higher weight on local community economic development.
‘‘It’s getting built right under our noses.’’
Mr Exton said D&M Bowden Constructions was one of 10 to tender for the job, but would not disclose how much price difference there was between Kennedy Builders and local contractors.
Cr Curtin said the successful tender had the lowest price.
‘‘Council could only make the decision based on the facts before them,’’ he said.
‘‘Council has to make a decision on the facts before them and try to do so in consideration of the shire and ratepayers.’’
Mr Bowden said the price difference between his business securing the tender and losing it, he believes, had not been much.
‘‘We have a good track record with the shire,’’ Mr Bowden said.
‘‘We did the Berrigan Sportsground Complex and completed the MIL building (Finley Library).
‘‘We rely heavily on being diverse and being able to receive work within the local community.’’
Mr Exton said council still needed to negotiate a final price with Kennedy Builders.
‘‘The apparent price is $741,130 including GST.
‘‘There were still some details which needed to be clarified. There is still some pricing which needs to be resolved,’’ he said.
The new development at the Barooga Recreation Reserve is set to be a three-storey grandstand equipped with function room and coaches boxes.
The building’s facade is set to be based on that of the iconic grandstand at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
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