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Selectmen discuss bid process

December 22, 2010
ALTON — The Alton Board of Selectmen held a workshop on Monday, Dec. 20.

Chairman David Hussey started the meeting by addressing the issue of getting projects out to bid.

Hussey believes that the town has to do a better job of getting projects that require a bid out to the public. According to Hussey, the last couple of projects that have gone out haven't gotten very many bids.

Hussey suggested that the board look at other ways to get bids out through the State of New Hampshire or by utilizing Web sites that contractors often refer to.

Hussey also addressed the purchase order process by town officials. Currently, any purchase below $1,000 doesn't require approval of Town Administrator E. Russell Bailey.

Hussey suggested that the board lower this requirement to $500 and that at least three written quotes be submitted with the purchase order.

"Now is the time, where we need to be careful what we buy," Hussey said. "I don't want to waste taxpayers' money."

Board member Loring Carr felt that the different departments often order from the same catalog or vendor repeatedly and that they don't shop around for a better deal.

The board approved the change unanimously, and the members will review the process in the next two to three months to see if it is working out logistically.

Bailey talked to the board about the Places Mill Bridge. The project originally was going to be capped at 30 days, but after some input from contractors, they have recommended to extend that time period to 40 days.

The board approved the extension to 40 days and approved the commencement of the project to start after school lets out. The board also approved the contractor's proposal to put the project out to bid. The State of New Hampshire will be paying for 80 percent of this project.

The board also reviewed the Bay Hill Road project and accepted a final estimate for the bid. The project cost will be just over $135,000, with the State of New Hampshire kicking in about $40,000 of the cost, including the curbing and basins. The project will be put out to bid later this winter.

The board accepted a milfoil grant totaling $3,555, which will help the town control milfoil in the lakes and local rivers.

Board member Peter Bolster presented guidelines for a fundraising committee that would be created for the Alton Senior Center.

Bolster suggested welcoming public input on what should be done with the Alton Senior Center.

Carr objected and suggested that the fundraising committee could come before the board at a meeting sometime in the future and then public input would be welcomed.

The fundraising committee plans to raise money to help complete the current plans at the Alton Senior Center, which include expansion of the current structure.

A Snow Removal Policy was introduced to the board, but that will be discussed at a meeting in the future.

The Alton Board of Selectmen has its next scheduled meeting on Monday, Jan. 3 at the Alton Town Hall.

Tim Croes can be reached at tcroes@salmonpress.com or 569-3126

Martin Lord Osman
Varney Smith
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