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Letter: 'Defending the Indefensible'

Co-chairman of the Concerned Taxpayers of Southbury voices opinion on town bidding processes.

Editor,

Defending Southbury’s failure to obtain competitive pricing for a $117,000 Mower, Edelson states:

..."The State Bid List is created through a competitive bid process. It was understood that the Town would be duplicating what the State had already done but with lower purchasing power," and

This assertion negated by fact that the Town duplicated what the State 'had already done on two occasions,' obtaining much better prices than the state bid recently for clearance of storm debris and for sand a couple of seasons ago. He adds,

“Items purchased from the State of Connecticut’s official competitive bid list…are exempt from the requirements established by this policy.”

Mr. Edelson's inference that purchases from the state exempts the town from obtaining competitive price quotations/bids  -- is 1) a ridiculous interpretation or; 2) a serious flaw in town policy which needs to be addressed and corrected promptly.  Prior to (not following) making any costly purchase from the state, the town should have obtained at least 3 price quotations if advertised bids were not practical due to the nature of the equipment.

Edelson is further factually incorrect when he states  ‘only one manufacturer’s boom mower folds to equal the width of the tractor facilitating transport’, since many manufacturers offer this feature among them:  Alamo and Rhino both with several dealers in CT.  I would expect Edelson made this statement because he was provided with erroneous information by staff rather any intent on his part to mislead.

That Southbury does not generate enough  'competitive bidding’ to be considered burdensome as Edelson states, is supported by the fact that the only bid on the town website is for the removal of debris.

We can only be assured of the best possible price is through obtaining bids or 3 price quotations if not practical to bid.

At the dawn of another administration, Southbury still appears to be the only town with bidding problems.

A neighboring town official said the state bid list is used as a baseline guide before towns go out to bid for any and everything on the state bid list - including asphalt and that towns almost always obtain a better deal – as we learned above with debris removal and sand.

Once again, we hear excuses for Southbury’s failure to mind the bottom line.

Signed,
Carol Renza
Co-chairman, Concerned Taxpayers of Southbury

Skip JAcobs February 22, 2012 at 08:02 PM
Way to go that letter says it all. Nothing new when new people get elected. Tom Crowe took the easy way out and does not care about the taxpayers dollars. This bid situation is bs and needs to be fixed. How long can southbury go on like this for ?
SbyMom February 22, 2012 at 10:19 PM
Carol, You obviously are a very passionate person for what you believe is right. I read for many months before the election your rants of Bill Davis and your enthusiastic over the top support for Ed Edelson. Though I haven't agreed with some of your tirades. You stick to what you believe in and are the first to speak up when you think someone is wrong, even if it is against the person you so loyally supported. For that I respect you.
carol renza February 22, 2012 at 11:46 PM
SbyMom... Thanks for your kind words...The tenets of good government and doing what is right does not belong to any one political party. It is disheartening and frustrating that we turned over one administration and the new one still doesn't get it and a department head is still allowed in one instance to state he only received one bid for for items costing upwards of $100,000 when several CT dealers supply the same trucks and bucket and falls for the same malarkey Davis did that'the cheap state sand was substandard,' back then and now,the malarkey that only 1 mfr. makes a folding boom mower.

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