Bids in for Tupper Lake fire-police building

TUPPER LAKE – Bids are in for the emergency services building, and they are within the budgeted range.

The village should hear by the end of next week about the grant funding it’s been expecting for the project, project manager Sean Foran told the Enterprise in a phone interview.

“That last hurdle was to have the project come in on budget, which it did yesterday,” Foran said Friday.

The project needed to be shovel ready, so now that bids show it can be done within budget and is ready to go, the grant funding can be awarded, he said.

Foran, whose company Heuber Breuer is under contract with the village to manage the project, has told village officials they could likely get $1.3 million in grants toward the project, and he said that number is still looking correct.

“We’re still confident we’re in a good position,” Foran said Friday. “So we’re just waiting for some final commitments from some people.”

He said his colleagues have gotten good feedback on the project from the people controlling the purse strings.

The village received about 30 bids on four areas of the project – general contracting, electrical, plumbing and fire, and mechanical – when bids opened Thursday. The bid opening was originally set for Tuesday, but it was pushed back due to requests from a few bidders, said village Clerk Mary Casagrain.

Potential bidders filled up the village offices at a pre-bid meeting last week, so much that the meeting had to be moved to the courtroom up the hall.

“Every parking space in the parking lot next door was taken,” Casagrain said.

No local contractors bid on the project. The closest were bidders from areas like Massena and Potsdam. Contractors need to put up bid bonds, which Casagrain said might have scared off some local companies.

Casagrain said village Attorney Nathan Race has the bids and is reviewing them now. She said the village board doesn’t plan to award any bids until they have in hand letters assuring the village it will get grant funding.

An initial look at the bid tabulation shows that Bette and Cring LLC out of Latham, with a Watertown office, is the low bidder for construction, with a base bid of $1.89 million and a bid that would include an extended community room costing $1.96 million. Two companies came in as low bidders on the plumbing and fire: Perras Excavating out of Massena and Burns Brothers Contractors from Syracuse. Both their bids came in around $225,000.

Empire NorthEast from Gouverneur came in with the low bid on electric work at $185,500, and J. Hogan Refrigeration and Mechanical, out of Peru, bid the lowest – $177,777 – on the project’s mechanical work.

The building is set to house the fire and police departments, both of which currently have severely lacking facilities. It is set to cost $4.5 million at the most, and village taxpayers voted this spring to let the village borrow $3.2 million to fund the rest of the project.

During the planning process, Foran had hoped construction would be ready to begin by Aug. 1 in order to have a roof on the building by this winter. He had projected it would be finished by June 2014.

Contact Jessica Collier at 518-891-2600 ext. 26 or