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County still waiting on jail bids

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There are still eight bids that need to be accepted for the county's jail expansion, a project that is projected to begin in 45 days and take 12 to 16 months.
 Nine members of the county's finance committee, plus County Executive Jeff Huffman and Donnie Wallace, the school system's maintenance supervisor who is overseeing the jail expansion project, met Friday to discuss the bid process.
Thirteen bids were solicited several weeks ago and five of them - cast-in-place concrete, masonry, roofing, heating and air and fire suppression - were accepted Friday by the commissioners, upon recommendation by Wallace. The other eight - plank system, plumbing, electrical, detention, painting, structural steel, fencing and electronics/security - will be rebid.
Some bids were too high or not complete, Wallace said, and no bids were submitted for the plank system, plumbing and structural steel. The expansion will increase the jail's maximum capacity from 123 to approximately 205. An additional cell block and two more pods, including an area for maximum security inmates and a medical area, will be added to the northwest and southwest sides of the jail.
Huffman originally estimated the project to cost $3.2 million. Wallace's estimate, based on received and projected bids, was $2.746 million.
"If these numbers hold, that's the best price-per-bed around, period," Huffman said.
He added that utilizing Wallace was big cost saver.
"Most folks don't have a Donnie Wallace," Huffman said. "We're getting this done a lot cheaper than we would otherwise. We're saving an awful lot of money by doing this." "After we get some of these rebid, we can close some of the gaps and save some money," said Dale Smith, a commissioner and member of the finance committee.
The following bids were awarded: cast-in-place concrete, MPC, $327,292; masonry, Whitney Anderson, $528,280; roofing, Carroll Roofing, $107,592; heat and air, Accurate Air, $210,730; and fire suppression, $64,936, River City Sprinklers.

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