Friday, February 10, 2012

The bidding process

Some readers might not realize that Wagner Farm is actually owned by the Glenview Park District. In Illinois, we have an interesting level of local government that most places don't. Instead of parks being part of the city structure they are their own municipal body. By having stand-alone park districts in each town, the preservation of open space and recreation programming for the entire community takes a higher precedent. Being part of a park district means that we are a governmental body. When we have large projects, they have to comply with the transparency laws that are common in the public sector. This week we hosted a bid opening that is interesting in its own right. To start the process plans are drafted and a public announcement is made to the newspaper that they are available for anyone to pick up. In the posting there is reference to a deadline time and date in which the sealed bids will be opened. At the scheduled time all of the bids are opened and read aloud while the contractors are in the room. For everyone, there is a little bit of drama. For the contractors they learn right away who the low bidder is. For us, we find out if the budget money we have allocated will cover the project. The job that we just bid out was for re-grading the special event area that seems to always hold water during the early summer. If the weather continues to stay mild we might be able to start soon.