Chris Huntress, chair of the Andover Youth Center Building Committee, presented encouraging updates and recommendations to the Board of Selectmen last week, after many delays.
"It's been a long time coming," Huntress said.
The Committee chose Dagle Electrical as the contractor for the project. Dagle bid at slightly more than $4.6 million. The only lower bid came from G&R Constuction, but that bid turned out to be the result of a clerical error so that company withdrew their bid.
One more delay stems from the contingency -- money set aside in addition to the project funding, in case of unforeseen added construction costs. The agreement between the town and the Andover Youth Foundation mandates an amount equal to 10 percent of the project be set aside and that 5 percent remain in the contingency fund at all times. But Huntress said 5 percent would be enough, since the project is out of the ground and most unforeseen costs come before this phase.
"We do know a lot of the conditions as they relate now," Huntress said. "We are out of the ground. The building we designed is a pre-engineered building."
Andover resident Mary Carbone was the lone voice against dropping the contingency, assailing the Youth Center process thus far.
"It’s been detrimental to the taxpayers of this town," Carbone said. "Things don’t always end up how they were projected... Nobody in this community is denying the youth anything. It’s how it’s being done that’s the issue."
Selectmen voted to allow town legal counsel to change the contingency to 5 percent. The Andover Youth Center Building Committee would then have to sign the amended agreement.