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By Randi Pierce
Archuleta County is taking the next step in its project to resurface Piedra Road next year, awarding a contract to prepare construction documents to engineering firm Bohannan Huston.
At their regular meeting on Sept. 18, the Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners awarded a contract to prepare construction design documents to the firm, which has offices in both New Mexico and Colorado.
Bohannan Huston is one listed on the county’s on-call engineering list, and is also the firm that prepared the Design Concept Report for the project, with Public Works Director Ken Feyen adding that the decision was based on Bohannan Huston’s quality, experience and qualifications.
Feyen also noted Bohannan Huston’s use of local contractors as a factor in the choice of the firm for the design.
In early August, Archuleta County received news that it had been granted $3.5 million for the construction of the road, to be coupled with $500,000 from county coffers. The Colorado Department of Transportation is administering the funds.
But, in order to be able to reconstruct the road in 2013, Archuleta County sought permission from CDOT to begin the design phase of the project while paperwork for the grant was being completed.
That permission was granted and the county cleared to retain Bohannan Huston, with the costs credited towards the county’s portion of the funding.
Feyen tempered the request to note that a change order for the contract with Bohannan Huston may come forward in the future if the agreement reached between CDOT and the county includes additional requirements.
“Man, we’re gonna be busy next year,” said Commissioner Clifford Lucero.
In other news at the same meeting, the BoCC designated John Ruyle as the Archuleta County Chief Building Insector and approved a letter to be sent to the Bureau of Land Management concerning the preliminary Environmental Assessment and Draft Finding of No Significant Impact prepared for the Tres Rios February 2013 Oil and Gas Lease Sale.
More on the assessment and finding were included in last week’s issue of The SUN.
In their letter, the BoCC stated several concerns, including that the lease is being governed by an, “out-of-date prescription” (referencing a resource management plan) and that the process is in violation of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and added a list of 16 other concerns questioning the analysis’ thoroughness and process.
The next regular meeting of the BoCC will be Oct. 2 at 1:30 p.m.