Contractor's bid for East Biloxi roadwork rejected despite less expensive price tag

Contractor's bid for East Biloxi roadwork rejected despite less expensive price tag

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Officials with contracting Company Oscar Renda say they are stunned after the Biloxi City Council rejected their bid on an infrastructure contract south of the railroad tracks; a bid nearly $11 million below the price tag of the nearest competitor.

At a packed the city council meeting, construction workers talked about needing their jobs to feed families.

"Oscar Renda has provided great jobs for great pay for our community," one employee said.

Florida-based Oscar Renda submitted an $82 million bid to do infrastructure work in East Biloxi in a contract covering the area south of the railroad tracks. The company is already working under a contract that is north of the tracks.

However, the problem is what the company left out of the bid package.  Biloxi attorneys advised it's a matter of following state law.

Oscar Renda owner Rudy Renda says the company was advised on Thursday that their bid was rejected for a single piece of paper.

Attorney Peter Abide said, "Any bids submitted by a non-resident contractor which does not include the the non-resident contractor's state law shall be rejected and not considered for award."

Abide says Oscar Renda did submit the paperwork while bidding on the north contract.

Oscar Renda officials noted that if the bid had to be rejected, then they asked the council to rebid the project. Instead, the council voted to reject the bid and enter price negotiations with the next lowest bidder.

"That's a tough pill to swallow. I sure hope you understand it. We are the right contractor for the other contract," said Renda.

Biloxi leaders say they will likely start the negotiations with the other contractor, Hemphill, the following week. If the price is not agreeable, the city then has the option to restart the bid process.

The council tabled a resolution to spend $600,000 on temporary paving in East Biloxi. The complaints are many over large amounts of dust, potholes, standing water, and car damage caused by road construction. Officials say contractor Oscar Renda would then be expected to reimburse that money.

Ward 2 council member Felix Gines says it's a quality of life issue.

"Open things up a little bit more. It would make it easier for for businesses to operate," said Gines. "Right now you have people not wanting to come into the community because of the repairs. Going through all the different potholes."

City council members wanted to know if the city would forfeit any future roadwork warranties before agreeing to have city workers do any temporary paving.

Oscar Renda CFO Corey Wells added, "We've had a lot of success but we've also had a lo of difficulties getting proper designs and specs. That's caused a lot delays. Caused road delays. The second resolution that they tabled is they're trying to get us to pay for that when closed meetings we were working amicably with them so we don't understand what's going on."

Copyright 2016 WLOX. All rights reserved.