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School Committee chooses same management firm again

July 14, 2011

Despite townwide outrage at the way the Village School project was managed, creating 31 pages of change orders and $5.4 million in over expenditures most of which will not qualify for state reimbursement, the School Committee Wednesday morning voted to do it all again will the same company. It was a 3 to 1 vote with only School Committee Tom Connolly calling for a change. Municipal Building Consultants Inc. was granted a $984,000 contract. Member Dick Nohelty said it was all done so quickly to get the benefit of the cooling economic climate in construction. He said, according to the Daily Item, that this was done on the recommendation of the MSBA (Massachusetts School Building Authority). Thomas Connolly disagreed with the Committee’s actions: “Under no circumstances will I support this,” he said. In an interview he said that this is the firm that managed the Village Street project and that project is mired in controversy about the way the Town’s money was spent. Jonathan Lederman agreed with Connolly’s direction, during the meeting, about having the same company do it all again but he ultimately voted with Nohelty and Leonardson to award the contract. New Superintendent Greg Maass is aware of the situation and aware of the concern expressed by MSBA in its critical letters, but clearly felt that those issues would not be repeated on his watch.

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