By 3-to-2 vote, Fayette to hire temps for West Bypass work
To help get the ball rolling on construction of the second phase of the West Fayetteville Bypass, the Fayette County Commission has authorized the hiring of temporary help for the county’s public works department.
Public Works Director Phil Mallon said the county has received very promising information from temporary staffing agencies, but it also will seek proposals from contractors. One of the main goals, however, is cost savings and that might not be achieved as much through by using contractors, Mallon said.
Using the additional staff in-house also will help begin work sooner and utilize existing county staff and equipment, Mallon said in a memo to the commissioners prior to the meeting.
The commission voted 3-2 to spend up to $250,000 for the temporary staff. Voting against were Commissioners Steve Brown and Allen McCarty, both of whom oppose the West Fayetteville Bypass.
Brown’s announcement of his “no” vote drew applause from the crowd, as a handful of Fayette residents have been continually petitioning the commissioners to stop the West Fayetteville Bypass.
Yet Brown so far has been unsuccessful in convincing more than one of his fellow commissioners to halt the project. Various bypass votes this year have been approved by the majority of Commissioners Herb Frady, Lee Hearn and Robert Horgan.
The $250,000 approved by the 3-2 vote does not include benefits, as such will not be paid to the temporary workers, Mallon said.
Although the project is still in the process of acquiring right-of-way, the needed easements and right-of-way have been acquired to start the shoulder and ditch line improvements; the needed permits and mitigation credits are already completed, and the material and equipment needed is on hand, the memo said.
The commission also voted 3-2 along the exact same lines to award an engineering and design contract for the bridge over Whitewater Creek along the bypass route. The contract was for up to $133,238 and was awarded to Heath & Lineback Engineers, which is already under contract to do the Westbridge Road bridge project.