While no decision was made at the last meeting, the North Branford Town Council began to discuss the demolition of the .
Town Manager said Public Works Director Fran Merola received a bid to use equipment and labor rates with a projected cost of approximately $35,000, not to exceed $40,000.
Several Council members expressed concern, noting that projects costing more than $7,500 are supposed to go out to bid.
“I don’t want to get into superseding our bidding process with town bidding and labor rates,” said Councilman .
Branigan said the town had some estimates from contractors and knew “we’d be in this ballpark,” as far as cost. He went on to explain the reasoning behind making the lead on the project.
“There’s a great likelihood that the town will have to put out a significant amount of money and won’t be reimbursed for a long time because there could be a lien on the property,” said Branigan. “Unfortunately we don’t have a demolition license and that’s a requirement so it would be a Public Works project supplemented with a licensed demolition contractor with equipment and labor rates under our bid schedule.”
The issue was then tabled for a future meeting with several Council members expressing interest that the project be put out to bid. Branigan also said that the proposed rates are designed for emergency response.
“But that’s a building that been sitting there for two years,” said Doody.
Councilman agreed that “that mess needs to be cleaned up,” but was unsure how the town should legally proceed. The question could not be answered at the meeting as Town Attorney John Gesmonde was not present.