Stanly school board approves new bid for Endy project

Published 8:40 am Thursday, April 11, 2024

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The Stanly County Board of Education unanimously moved to approve a new bid for classroom expansion at Endy Elementary School.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the board approved J.M. Cope’s bid of $3.982 million as the bid. Cope’s bid is $134,000 more than the original lowest bid from HM Kern but $127,000 less than the first accepted bid from Hoss Contracting ($4.109 million).

Superintendent Dr. Jarrod Dennis said he met with representatives from HM Kern on March 8.

“After the meeting and hearing our concerns, (Kern) withdrew their bid, and we released their bond,” Dennis said.

The superintendent said he consulted with members of the SCS facilities committee, then spoke to the lowest two remaining bidders.

“After having conversations and seeking additional information, we feel confident JM Cope was the lowest responsible bidder as it pertains to quality, time and price.”

“The general statute…does not state just the lowest bidder. It provides some other variables for things like quality, performance, time (and) responsiveness,” board member Dustin Lisk said.

Later in his board comments, Lisk said, “any time I make a vote, I’m going to make a vote that I think is in the best interest of the taxpayers. That’s called being a fiduciary.”

He said he has heard the term frugal used, but said the synonym for that word is cheap.

“Cheap is what got us here. Cheap is what put us 105th in local funding. If you combine federal and state funding, we’re 112th out of 115 districts. We are almost last. Cheap is what didn’t build a high school in 2005 for less than $25 million with $60 million revenue in the county,” Lisk said.

He said the county generates $100 million, but a new high school with inflation would now cost $130 million.

Regarding the bids, Lisk compared the decision to one similar to a hypothetical situation of choosing the better of six licensed brain surgeons for a patient.

“They’re licensed and approved, but there’s a difference in quality and performance,” Lisk said.

Board member Bill Sorensen mentioned funding in his comments, likening the situation to trying to fix a leak in a roof cheaply at first but costly in the end.

“What we’re doing to our kids is exposing them to the rain,” Sorensen said. “The rain’s going to come and it’s going to get inside the house. If we stay at 105 out of 115 in county funding our kids, we’re begging for flooding and for bad things to happen.”

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio has served as the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press for more than 16 years and has written numerous news and feature storeis as well. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also won an award from Boone Newspapers, and has won four North Carolina Press Association awards.

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