“This project has dragged on for too long and we’ve got to get it on track and we’ve got to get it moving,” Senator Tom Ada.
Guam – Yet another roadblock is delaying much-needed construction of Simon Sanchez High School.
Senator Tom Ada tells PNC that Core Tech International, one of the top bidders in the $100 million invitation for bid, has submitted another protest.
“I do know that CTI in fact submitted a protest on September 7 and according to Guam’s procurement law, what that would have required the Department of Public Works to do is to immediately cease the procurement process so that it can evaluate the protest to see if it has merit or not,” explained Senator Ada.
But to date, DPW has not acknowledged the protest.
“It’s just really unknown what the department is doing now…I don’t know what is happening, but today is the deadline and I don’t think we’re going to see a bid submission,” he added.
According to Senator Ada, necessary documents were missing in the solicitation.
“This is something to be concerned about because this endeavor has been four years in the making and we are nowhere closer to starting construction than the four years since it was first authorized by law,” he said.
Although another protest has been made, Ada said the missing paperwork was something even he spotted while reviewing the IFB. In fact, Ada says CTI brought up the glaring oversight to DPW as early as July, but since then, nothing has been done.
“How [the documents] were overlooked I think is pure negligence. So, we’ve got to acknowledge that the documents are not there. That was the basis for the protest, so let’s get the documents together and let’s get this process forward,” Ada recommended.
But if DPW decided to deny CTI’s protest then the senator says that it will only prolong the construction project.
“[If denied] then inevitably the protester is going to appeal to the OPA and we’re talking about another 30 or 60 or 90 days before a decision is going to be made just to come back to the same starting point,” he said.
And while the respective agencies continue to sort out the procurement mess, the parents, students, faculty, and staff of Simon Sanchez High School continue to wait for a project that should’ve been completed a long time ago.
“We will be staying on top of this. It’s a kind of a fine line because you got to give the department some space to actually perform its responsibilities, but on the other hand, this is just an example as to why we need to keep a close watch,” he concluded.