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Hiring locally on library projects

Amelia Shelley Special to the Post IndependentGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
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I get asked frequently if we are using local contractors on the Rifle and Parachute Branch Library projects. The answer is an unequivocal yes! In hiring Adolfson and Peterson (A&P) as our General Contractors, we asked them to pay special attention to recruiting local subcontractors for both jobs. They have made significant efforts to reach out to the local subcontractor community including an open house in Rifle, extensive advertising and recruitment for bids. A&P has a rigorous vetting process for all subcontractors, including a review of their business experience with similar projects, manpower availability and financial stability and not every local contractor has been able to qualify. In this economy this process has proven to be a double edged sword; it is both difficult for some subcontractors to qualify for the projects, and the project could potentially serve as the lifeline they need at this time to keep their business afloat. While we understand this dilemma, we also understand that while the project is under construction, A&P is in charge of the project and carries the liability should any subcontractor fail to fulfill their obligations, which ultimately affects the quality and timely completion of the project. I should note however, that currently we have seen a large number of bids, and the Library District is seeing a decline in the projected costs for the buildings.A&P has already hired a number of subcontractors that are new partners for them. Through the first two bid packets – including site work, concrete and structure – 80 percent of the bids have gone to local subcontractors for the Rifle Branch Library, and 73 percent to locals on Parachute. I anticipate that we will not be able to keep these percentages as high on the remainder of the work, because there aren’t as many subcontractors in Garfield County in the remaining trades being bid, but we expect to continue to hire locally for much of the work. – Amelia Shelley is the Garfield County Library District Executive Director


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