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The Carthage Press
  • River project bids come in under projected cost

  • All three bids for repairing the bank of the Spring River at the Morrow Mill crossing east of Carthage came in under an engineer’s projections meaning the project will cost Jasper County and the federal government less money than expected.
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  • All three bids for repairing the bank of the Spring River at the Morrow Mill crossing east of Carthage came in under an engineer’s projections meaning the project will cost Jasper County and the federal government less money than expected.
    The lowest among the bids opened Tuesday by Eastern District Commissioner Jim Honey at the Jasper County Courthouse on Tuesday was $64,490 from Bennett Inc., Lamar.
    The other two bids were $82,989.60 from Ellick Garren Excavating, Stella, and $93,000 from CBH Construction, LLC.
    All three bids were well under the more than $100,000 that Michael Malone, a Natural Resources Conservation Service engineer who attended the bid opening, said he estimated the project would cost.
    Malone said the fact that the bids were under his projections means the project can move forward. If none of the bids had come in under projections, the project would have had to be re-bid.
    Honey said the full commission will decide which bid to accept at its next meeting at 9 a.m., Tuesday, Sept. 4.
    Honey and Malone said they wanted to make sure Bennett Inc. had the correct numbers because that company’s bid was significantly lower than the other two bids.
    The project is being paid for with 75 percent federal money and 25 percent county funds.
    The project is designed to repair damage from a partial washout of the dam that diverted the Spring River to provide power to the old flower mill.
    The north end of the dam washed out several years ago causing the river to wash away about an acre of ground on private property on the north side of the river.
    The erosion was threatening to damage the relatively new bridge that carries County Route 118 over the river.
    The county first sought federal help to repair the washout in 2009, but funds were not available at that time.
    This year, the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service offered to fund 75 percent of the project, which calls for removing part of the dam and restoring the Spring River’s natural flow and using fill dirt and rock to restore about 400 feet of the north bank, then use large rocks and matting to armor the bank and prevent future erosion.
    Malone estimated earlier in the year the project would take about 10 days to complete once the contractor begins to work.
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