Clarification Is In Order

I think some clarification is in order for last Thursday’s called meeting of the Hazlehurst City Council.

On two occasions, the Mayor inserted my name into the discussion. I wasn’t present so I didn’t have the opportunity to respond.

One reference was to the fact that city engineer Carl Hostadter and I worked hard on the roundabout project and that’s true. I spent a lot of time and effort on the project and I appreciate the Mayor pointing that out.

The other reference was an allegation that I, while attending a council meeting as a private citizen sitting in the audience, told the council that they “needed to pay the man,” meaning contractor Joey Hiers who was owed money by the city.

In my old age, I forget a lot of things but, still, I don’t recall making such a statement and can’t imagine why I would have.

I may be mistaken and it’s really not important anyway. I just wanted to explain that I don’t recall having said that.

I think it should also be pointed out that, when Carl and I worked on the roundabout project, he developed initial plans with a lot of fluff in the project, knowing the initial bids on the work would probably be more than the city could afford.

That enabled Carl, when looking at the itemized bid documents, to decide which portions of the initial plans could be eliminated to bring the costs back down to a workable number. Carl has done that on a number of projects for the city and for the many other cities and counties he works for.

The initial bids for the roundabouts came in at around $750,000. So Carl went to work and pared down the project to get it into the neighborhood of $350,000. He did, as the Mayor pointed out, work with the Mayor to make those cuts but those cuts were in the works from the time Carl and I worked on the project.

Hopefully, this explanation will clear up any misunderstanding for those who watched the video posted on the Internet of last week’s council meeting.

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