Columbia County commissioners approved a bid Tuesday for a Martinez drainage project from which they fired the original contractor last year.
Evans-based Blair Construction Inc. won the nearly $327,000 bid to finish the stormwater project on Sandalwood Drive in the Springlakes neighborhood.
The project to finish widening the culverts and parts of Reed Creek that feed the subdivision’s 20-acre lake should conclude in 60 days, said county Water Utility Director Bill Clayton prior to the meeting.
Initially, Jeffery Harris Trucking Co. won the project after putting forth the lowest bid of $814,000. However, Clayton issued the company a notice of termination just days before a November deadline approached.
About half the work had been done, Clayton said at the time.
Clayton initially asked commissioners to not award the project to Harris, saying the company received bad recommendations. But the commission was unwilling to subvert the bidding process.
Officials received more bad news in February concerning this project when they tried to collect money paid to Harris from Pennsylvania-based First Sealord Surety.
The bonding company filed bankruptcy that month and was taken over by the Pennsylvania Insurance Dept. for liquidation. Clayton said it might take until October for officials to learn if the county will receive some, if any, compensation on that project.