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Posted: February 28, 2013 9:26 p.m.

Attorney: Odd low bid by company legal

When the Newton County Board of Commissioners recently approved a bid by LB Recycling and Waste Services, one commissioner wondered whether the bold promise made in the bid to best any competitor’s offer was legal.

The board voted unanimously to approve the LB contingent on whether county attorney Tommy Craig decided that promise was legal after he researched the matter.

Craig told the News yesterday it was indeed legal. LB won the contract.

The brief controversy began when LB said it would beat any competing bid by 2 percent. The winner would have a contract to purchase and pick up scrap metal at the county’s landfill and recycling centers. LB’s offer meant that however big a price a competitor would pay the county for metal, LB would pay the county 2 percent more.

LB Recycling’s bid was just 9 cents per pound at a two-year fixed rate. Oconee Metal Recovery beat that price by offering to pay 9.6 cents per pound for one year. But based on its bid, LB is willing to add .00192 of a penny per pound to that, which makes it a winner.

“I didn’t find anything in the county’s purchase policies or state law to prohibit it,” he told the News.

Craig added that he would recommend that the Request For Proposal process be reviewed, revised and clarified so business owners will be able to understand easily what is expected in a bid. And they will know what promises, offers and language are and are not acceptable in a bid.

“We can lay out the parameters clearly,” Craig said.

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