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Palm Coast Tuesday, May 2, 2017 1 year ago

County looks for options after bids for beach restoration work come back too high

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All three bids came back at around twice the price the county had hoped for, County Administrator Craig Coffey said.
by: Jonathan Simmons News Editor

The Flagler County government is looking at its options after all three bids it received from companies willing to take on its beach restoration project came in too high — about twice the cost the county had hoped for.

The county rejected all of those bids and plans to go back out to bid to see if it can get the cost lower, County Administrator Craig Coffey told county commissioners at a May 1 workshop.

The county has three strategies to try to get the cost more manageable, Coffey said: 1) Develop a local source of sand, which may or may not be possible, 2) Remove uncertainty for bidders by handling permitting for some of the project ahead of time, and 3) Check other parameters of the project to see if any were “too cumbersome.”

“We’re going to work through all that,” Coffey said. “We’re progressing. I wish it were quicker, but it is what it is.”

The project to build a seawall at Painters Hill is still moving forward, and the county expects to have a permit for that work by May 15.

Although the county is not implementing the Army Corps of Engineers’ beach renourishment plan, it’s still working with the Army Corps to make itself eligible for federal funding, Coffey said.

The county is also waiting on permits to undertake the beach work during sea turtle nesting season, a plan that will require contracting with the Volusia-Flagler Turtle Patrol to relocate nests.

But there are multiple variables affecting when the work might actually begin.

“Even if we had all the regulatory stuff cleared up, we’ve got a budget issue and a sand issue.” Coffey said to the commission. “I’m not sure I can give you a real good timeline now until a few of these key issues are in place."

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