Town holds on Leeds Pond culvert repair project

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Town holds on Leeds Pond culvert repair project
Plandome Manor Mayor Barbara Donno (Photo by Samuel Glasser)

The Town of North Hempstead is holding off on repairs on the Leeds Pond culvert in Plandome Manor, officials said at a Town Board meeting Tuesday night, in order to review whether the project’s lowest bidder complies with all town laws.

The culvert, first built by the town in the 1950s, allows Leeds Pond to drain into Manhasset Bay and its deteriorating condition was recognized in 2009. Part of Plandome Road, where it crosses the culvert, has dipped and part of an adjacent sidewalk has also collapsed.

According to town documents, the lowest bidder for the Leeds Pond culvert repair project was Bayville-based Woodstock Construction. The company offered to do the project for $1.52 million.

Councilwoman Dina De Giorgio of Port Washington said approving the bid was scratched from the agenda and asked for more information as to why.

Town Attorney Elizabeth Botwin said officials needed to review whether Woodstock was in compliance “with all of our laws,” specifically town regulations regarding apprenticeships.

“We didn’t get enough information in time to allow for a vote for today, but if we find there is compliance it is possible to, with all members of the board’s agreement, to award the bid and ratify it at the next meeting so that the construction can move forward,” Botwin said. “I know everyone is anxious to get going with this project.”

Botwin said they are also awaiting information from the state Department of Labor.

“As long as we have a way to move it along, that’s fine,” De Giorgio said. “I appreciate that. Thank you.”

Plandome Manor Village Mayor Barbara Donno, who was not immediately available on Wednesday, previously said village officials met with Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth and emphasized the urgency of repairing the culvert.

“We stressed that this should not wait until the council’s August meeting” because of tidal and weather concerns, Donno said at a June village board meeting. “There is a lack of urgency on the part of the town. Port Washington Boulevard is to be repaved in October which will divert traffic to Plandome Road.”

Town officials said they could take a phone vote to get the project started as soon as possible and then formally ratify it at their next meeting on Thursday, Sept. 6, at 7 p.m.

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