RINGGOLD, Ga. — A construction firm from southern Mississippi beat out five other bidders hoping to remove tornado-felled trees from creeks and ditches in Catoosa County.
The Catoosa County Commission voted unanimously at its regular meeting Tuesday to spend $57,850 to hire Holiday Construction of Poplarville, Miss., to remove trees from seven sites.
"We did have some local bidders, but they were fairly high," county Stormwater Director James Davis said when Commissioner Jim Cutler asked if any Catoosa companies had submitted sealed bids.
The highest bid came in at $145,000, Davis said, adding, "I believe that was a Catoosa [company]."
Federal funding will pay 75 percent of the cost, and the Georgia Emergency Management Agency will chip in 10 percent, so the county's out-of-pocket expense will be $8,668, officials said.
Removal of trees that fell during the April 27, 2011, storms will help water flow at seven sites, the worst of which probably is a tangle of fallen trees in a ditch along Holcomb Road near the entrance to Ringgold Primary School, county officials said.
Commission Chairman Keith Greene encouraged Catoosa companies to apply for such projects.
"We do like to keep things local when we can," he said.
Commissioner DeWayne Hill echoed that sentiment, but added, "It's also our duty to make sure we get the best bang for the buck, too."
Tim Omarzu covers education for the Times Free Press. Omarzu is a longtime journalist who has worked as a reporter and editor at daily and weekly newspapers in Michigan, Nevada and California.