The cost of alternate additions to the new Pottawatomie County jail/courthouse looks to be the deciding factor as the county commission closes in on a contractor.
The commission met Monday to address representatives from the two lowest bidding companies, which are Murray and Sons Construction and Kansas Building Systems Constructors, Inc., both based out of Topeka.
Both companies offered base bids as well as three other bids for the cost of potential additions to the courthouse, which are a geo-thermal heating system, a sewer grinder pump, and an add-on to the kitchen.
KBS Construction’s bid is $11.2 million while Murray and Sons Construction currently boasts the lowest bid at $10.7 million; however, the company’s initial estimate given on the geo-thermal heating system was significantly off. Should the commission decide it wants to include that in the new facility, it would force the Murray and Sons to withdraw its name from the race.
“Do we need the geo-thermal (system) or do we not?” commission chair Gary Yenzer said. “What’s the payout on it? There’s a lot of questions that we need to review before we decide on a company.”
Yenzer says he is fairly certain that the sewer grinder pump will be factored in with the overall cost of the project.
“We just have to sit down and figure out which is the better option for our tax-payers,” Yenzer said. “They’re the ones who are ultimately paying for it.”
According to Yenzer, the commission could make its selection as early as next Monday.