Stafford Township took another step forward in constructing a new community center on Bay Avenue and a public pavilion at the site of the old community center in Mill Creek Park on Tuesday night.
The Township Council passed an ordinance on first reading to
issue $2,245,000 in bonds to cover the construction costs of the projects
during their meeting.
During the public portion of the meeting, Beach Haven West Civic Association President Dawn Papatheodorou questioned the council about the cost and type of construction being used.
The buildings are to be made for pre-fabricated metal, which Mayor John Spodofora is the “cheapest” type of construction available. “We’re giving you a cheap building,” the Mayor said, “but using the most inexpensive method available.”
As for the cost, the mayor and various council members noted that the cost of public construction is often more expensive then private construction.
As an example the mayor said the new Surfside Casual building on Route 72, which is also a metal building, would cost the township far more to construct than it did the furniture retailer.
“Public sector contractors must adhere to prevailing wage laws and other government mandated conditions that private contractors do not,” said the mayor.
The bond amount is to cover the total “anticipated” costs based on the figures provided by the township’s architect and engineer at a presentation at last months meeting, he said.
The actual amount of the bond will be determined by where the bids come in for the projects. “This gives us the ability to seek competitive bids for the projects, which could be all over the place,” said the mayor.
Previously he said all monies received from FEMA and the township’s insurers related to the old Mill Creek Center destroyed in Superstorm Sandy will also go to offset the construction costs, which also will reduce the bond amount.
The council also introduced two other bonding ordinances. One for $2,684,205 for “capital improvements and acquisition of various capital equipment” related to the 2014 budget.
The preliminary 2014 Capital Budget was approved by resolution earlier.
The final bond ordinance was for the water and sewer
department’s upcoming capital improvements and acquisition in the amount of
In a related matter, the council approved two resolutions to apply to the state’s Department of Environmental Protection and Environmental Infrastructure Trust for water main replacement along Mill Creek Road due to failure and for replacement on adjacent roads due to anticipated failure.
The second filing is to replace water mains running from the water treatment plant on Mill Creek Road to Paul Boulevard.
All three bonding ordinance will be open for public comment and final adoption at the next council meeting on March 18th at 7 p.m.