Jessica Cejnar Andrews / Wednesday, Oct. 18 @ 12:32 p.m. / Infrastructure, Local Government
Contractor Leaves Harbor's South Beach Restroom Project Due To Rumors That Could 'Damage His Reputation,' CCHD Board President Says
A local contractor has withdrawn from a Crescent City Harbor District project to build restrooms at South Beach due to rumors that could potentially damage his reputation.
Commissioners were expected to award a design-build contract to William Marshall Jones on Tuesday. Instead, Board President Wes White pulled the item from the agenda and told the public and his colleagues why.
“I am upset about it,” White said. “We went to a great deal of trouble and expense to draw up a contract. That’s public money we’re spending, and because of rumors that are untrue, we now have wasted public money.”
Jones, owner of W. Marshall Jones Construction, called the rumors “very silly stuff and not even worth repeating.” It’s better that the Harbor District “go ahead and proceed” with their project, Jones told the Wild Rivers Outpost on Wednesday.
The harbor is using a $450,000 California Coastal Conservancy grant to build the facility and is expected to save about $2,000 a month on port-a-potties, Harbormaster Tim Petrick told commissioners at that Aug. 1 meeting.
Jones was the only contractor to respond to the Harbor District’s June 6 request for proposals for the restroom facility, according to a staff report from Mike Bahr and Aislene Delane, of Community System Solutions, which manages the Harbor District’s grants.
In a July 24 letter to the Harbor District, the contractor said he envisioned a fun organic design using distressed Douglas fir for a driftwood feel, exposed frame surfaces with Sierra wood-grain reinforced cement board and refractive aqua blue art glass.
Jones’s proposed price was $31,168 for the design and engineering and $554,545 for the construction.
During a subsequent interview with the Harbor District, Jones said he would work with the district to create a final design “that meets the harbor’s needs for a restroom with showers,” according to the Aug. 1 staff report.
Jones said he would also identify work the Harbor District could do, such as trenching, that would potentially reduce project costs.
To receive the California Coastal Conservancy grant, the Harbor District is also responsible for a $117,000 in-kind contribution, according to Bahr. Jones’s bid was an “all-construction bid,” Bahr said.
On Tuesday, Delane told commissioners that Community System Solutions will re-release a request for proposals for the restroom project in November.