PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

April 8, 2013

Contractor awarded bid for Groves municipal building

Mary Meaux
Port Arthur News

GROVES — Bids for the construction of Groves’ much anticipated municipal building has finally come to fruition.

G&G Enterprises of Orange was awarded the contract for the emergency operations center/police station/court municipal building for a price not to exceed $3.6 million at Monday’s council meeting. City leaders interviewed both of the lowest bidders and awarded the bid to the contractor that not only feels they can meet the deadline but will do what is necessary to have the construction done by deadline, City Manager D. E. Sosa said.

The 10,600 square foot facility will be located behind Bruce’s Market Basket at Washington and Main.

Colin Garrett, president of G&G Enterprises, was present at the meeting to answer questions from council. Mayor Pro Tem Sidney Badon inquired of any recent emergency operations centers the company had worked on to which Garrett told of construction of a similar facility being built in Orange County at the price of $12.5 million. That project is between three-and-a-half to four weeks from completion, he said.

Garrett also told council of a proposed list that consists of a percentage of local contractors to be used including suppliers and equipment — $1.19 million of the project will consist of local vendors.

“In the committee meeting I expressed my desire to use local vendors, being from a small town myself I understand the importance of using local,” Garrett said.

Based on Monday’s recommendation from council Garrett was ready to pull necessary permits to begin the process, he added.

Representatives of BRW Architects Ray Holliday and Justin Dreyer were also in attendance at the meeting.

Mayor Brad Bailey and Councilmember Kyle Hollier were absent from the meeting.

 A majority of the funding for the project comes from a Port Security Grant. The city applied for the grant in 2009 but the grant was not awarded until mid-2011, City Marshal Jeff Wilmore said in an interview prior to the meeting. A change in the way the grants were handled at the federal level affected the timeline for construction as well as how and when municipalities could receive an extension, he said.

Wilmore said city leaders did not realize that the “clock was started” when the grant was first awarded. By the time the city had chosen an architect and an environmental preservation report was completed time had passed and the city was well into 2012. The federal timeline expired in 2012 hence the reason for the latest extension.

The city has until the end of the year to complete construction of the multi-purpose facility.

The federal grant and the city’s match will provide a police department and emergency operations center built to withstand 150 mile per hour winds. In addition the city’s match of approximate of $2 million will be worked into the city’s bonded debt in a fashion that city leaders said will keep the tax rate level.

E-mail: mmeaux@panews.com

Twitter: MaryMeauxPANews