"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Sunday 1 March 2015

Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Is English Our First Language ?": 

A motion had to be made directing staff to include a clause designed to compel completion on schedule? You mean there was never one there?? They have to be told??? I thought we pay professionals to drawing up these contracts? 

Posted by Anonymous to  Our Town and Its Business at 28 February 2015 at 20:06


We do indeed pay professional staff to draw up contracts. Each on the rising scale of the sunshine list.

Clauses in  contracts are easier to insert than they are to legally enforce.

Failure to perform according to a penalty clause can be  the fault of the client or  contractor. The client's interest is to ensure plans and specifications are complete and accurate before contracts  are awarded.

Significant changes and obvious oversights illustrate inefficiency at best and incompetence at worst and would undoubtedly mitigate against the client in any court action.

The AFLC project is five months behind schedule and almost a third over contract price.

Other factors prevail against us. We were losing a year's revenue by closing the facility for construction. Late completion means additional revenue lost. At least half as much again providing all clients return to the facility.

Architect fees are based on completed cost .Fees will be almost one third higher than financed.

Lost revenue will create higher user fees or a red line in the leisure services budget. Neither reflected  in final cost of  the project. Yet it is part of the cost whoever pays it. 

 A Council snippet watched on Tuesday evening  was a revelation.

Director of Environment and Infrastructure  Simanovskis sought approval for a single source contract
for supervision of construction of the Joint facility.
Cost $77,000.
The main contract was awarded on July 29th 2014.

The night Mr. Constable was appointed to fill the Ballard vacancy.
Councillor Humphreys was on vacation.
A single vote won  approval of the project.
The vacancy did not need to be filled until August 23rd.
One candidate offered to serve without pay.

Plans for the project were underway long before the contract was awarded.Plenty of time for staff to think of everything. Not enough for Council due diligence.

On Tuesday ,Mr. Simanovskis informed Council supervision of the Family Leisure Complex project
took more time than he and the maintenance manager expected.

Architects also provide supervision,he said.

When Mr. Somanovskis finished his explanation Mayor Dawe advised Council he and Councillor Able had attended two or three meetings. He wanted to complement Mr SImanovskis for his advice to council that supervision was needed for the project.

Councillor Thompson queried the town's commitment to the purchasor of the current works site.

The CAO affirmed the commitment and the hundreds of new jobs that go along with along with the sale.

Councillor Kim asked if a job description of supervision would be provided.and was assured.it would. 

Hours are twenty a week Contract $77,000.

All  council queries answered. Lickety split. Approval granted.

Then the most extraordinary thing happened.

The Mayoir looked  straight into the camera or at a person in the audience.
He crossed his eyes. Then rolled them upwards in their sockets. Then stuck out his tongue slightly.  All in a matter of seconds following the decision being made.

Finally he covered his face with both hands as though washing off all telltale signs of relief and satisfaction.
A little late perchance.


Anonymous said...

What BUFFOONERY is all this grimacing, eye-rolling and face-covering?

Is this an audition for a leading role in a possible musical based on MAD Magazine, which is now 60 years from its birth.

The fellow's name was Alfred E. Neuman, I believe.

This is a very serious subject and demands the respect and attention of all those at the table.

"The CAO affirmed the commitment and the hundreds of new jobs that go along with the sale."

What commitment, what hundreds of new jobs, and what sale?

Anonymous said...

I have actually trying to forget about all this nonsense but it just get worse by the day.
I am almost positive that, at then-Cllr Ballard's insistence, a committee of 2-3 council members was created specifically to provide over-sight on that project. Now we hear that a " couple " of them attended a " few " meetings.
Not my idea of over-sight at all.......

Anonymous said...

So was the motion that was brought forward just a smoke and mirror theatrical performance? I understand that there are sometimes unforseable circumstances for projects to be delayed by a contractor. Weather is one of them. Mold in the air vents is another. How this mold was undetected by our town is mind blowing. So much for our "assets" in this town are being taking care of safely to its residents. We're always there ready to penalize private businesses for these type of environmental oversights. But when it comes to government...No biggy.

Anonymous said...

20 hrs a week... $77,000. How long is this contract for? The duration of the build? One year?

Anonymous said...

I think they might have been talking about some prospective purchaser for the old work site on Leslie ?
There is supposed to be " some action " in March.

Anonymous said...

The individual who made that comment might want to check out the Auroran issue in which The Mayor dismisses completion contracts. It is not breaking news that he does not consider them necessary.

Anonymous said...

" 18:37 "
The Town's works yard is on Scanlon Court, not Leslie. It is to be sold to an adjacent business which plans to expand its plant, thus adding 200 jobs.

Anonymous said...

I think it was one of the new councillors who got the penalty clause included in all new contract.

Anonymous said...

Apparently the Centre is experiencing problems too. With the ruddy state of the art climate control. [ see Mr Watts ] And heaven knows how Hillary came through the winter - I have just one leaky window driving me nuts. They never even got their fence repaired last summer.