Marshall County Must Put Work Back Out For Bid

Ongoing oil and gas work was the reason contractors gave for not submitting bids for proposed work at two Marshall County facilities.

During Tuesday’s meeting of the Marshall County Commission, county administrator Betsy Frohnapfel said renovation work to the Veterans Plaza — on the northeast side of the courthouse lawn — and the Marshall County Animal Shelter was not successfully bid out. Frohnapfel said one bid meeting had one attendee while the other was attended by two.

Frohnapfel said the contractors who responded advised that they were currently tied up with oil and gas work, and that the county would put the projects back out to bid in two or three months.

“We held two mandatory pre-bid meetings, and for the Veterans Plaza, we had only one bidder show up,” she told the commission. “So we knew at that point, we were going to cancel those bids. We had two for the animal shelter project, we had our architects confirm with them yesterday that they would not be submitting an application.

“Last week, the architects made calls to most of the general contractors they sent the plans to,” Frohnapfel said. “The answers were the same — they’re swamped with oil and gas work, they don’t have the people to take on extra jobs and do the bidding.”

The work to Veteran’s Plaza would involve redoing the pavement around the fountain, with the inclusion of a series of granite slabs listing the names of all Marshall County veterans who died in wartime or in wartime-related accidents or injury.

Frohnapfel said she hopes the renovation to this could be completed by Memorial Day 2019.

The animal shelter renovations include the addition of a meet-and-greet room where prospective adopters could have open space to interact with the pets they would be adopting, with more space to do so beyond the front room mostly occupied by the reception desk. Another room would be added for the shelter to use at its discretion, possibly for additional housing for cats.

“We’re becoming so overrun with cats,” she said. “We’re adding another area they can use as necessary. My belief is they’re going to be adding another cat room.”

Additionally, some outside spaces would be brought inside. The shelter also needs heating and air conditioning work and two additional quarantine rooms.

In other commission business, a new hire for the sheriff’s office, which was scheduled to be approved by the commission, was withdrawn by Sheriff Kevin Cecil. Additionally, commissioners met Liberty, the Marshall County Prosecutor’s Office dog, who accompanies witnesses through stressful court proceedings.