Similar to my previous response: This depends on who the owner is.
PRIVATE SECTOR: If you've signed a contract, then this guy has agreed to do
the work for this price. I don't think the bidder's list of subs is
considered a contract document (if it is, then I retract my statement). Look
at the contract; what does it say? If it says only that the parties agree
that the work shall be done by the party of the second part, for the party
of the first part, in consideration of thus-and-such sum of money, that's
all the obligation the contractor has.
PUBLIC SECTOR: Follow the LAW. There will nevertheless still be a contract.
Often public entities do expect to get back some of the money gained by
alternative practices such as new subs, or a contractor-initiated redesign.
In either case: What does the contract say?
From: Zachary Goswick [mailto:ZachG(--nospam--at)angusyoung.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 12, 2000 8:45 AM
Subject: RE: Bidding ethics Related
I have a question related to the GC shopping subs after the bids are in. We
required the GC to submit the list of subcontractors, but when the shops
start coming in, the sub is not on the list. We suspect the GC has shopped
the subs and gotten a better price. What course of action do we have?
Should the difference in price be given back to the owner?
From: Jim Kestner [ mailto:jkestner(--nospam--at)somervilleinc.com
Sent: Wednesday, April 12, 2000 8:08 AM
Subject: Re: Bidding ethics
I know of no construction industry standard, however.......
The GC will shop for the lowest price subcontractor after the bids are
in. To try to prevent this, we require the GC to list his subs with his
bid. If the "giveback" squeezes the contractors too much, they will be
forced into taking shortcuts. These shortcuts will ultimately hurt
everyone on the project including the Owner.
I do not recommend this practice! I agree with your response.
Jim Kestner, P.E.
Green Bay, Wi.
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