Asphalt/road contractor’s quality, performance questioned in St. John

Published 12:15 am Saturday, January 19, 2019

EDGARD — St. John Parish Council members, acknowledging problems incurred last year, tabled a bid award for the 2019 asphalt road improvements to Coastal Bridge Company.

Several Council members raised concerns with Coastal during the past year regarding the quality of the asphalt work, problems with subcontractors and even some difficulties residents encountered with some of the sub contractors’ employees.

Parish engineer Joseph Savoie, who recommended tabling the vote during this month’s first meeting in Edgard, said he is in negotiations with Coastal officials regarding stipulations to be put into the contract for “additional assurances of quality of work based on previous (concerns).”

“We are not prepared to sign the contract,” he said.

When questioned by Councilwoman Jaclyn Hotard regarding those assurances, Savoie said he is proposing language that will hold Coastal accountable for the sub contractors with additional stipulations.

Also, Coastal will be required to have a representative available at the Council meetings.

Additionally, Coastal will not be allowed to perform private work while administering a public project.

A discussion followed about awarding the contract on a street-by-street basis, but Savoie said some leeway has to be given to the contractor because of the cost of moving equipment into place.

“We try to work with them making mobility more efficient and grouping by area,” he said. “It helps them be more efficient.

“As the parish engineer, I don’t want those issues any more than you do,” he added. “It’s a black eye on me as well as the contractor.”

— By Richard Meek