Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Proposed MAPS Manager Wants $20 Million for Job

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Proposed MAPS Manager Wants $20 Million for Job

Article excerpt

Huber, Hunt & Nichols, the international construction firm negotiating with city officials to take over management of the Metropolitan Area Projects, wants $20 million to manage the deal, city officials confirmed Wednesday.

Much of the money would come from already established MAPS budgets that would normally be used to pay general contractors overseeing each of the projects.

City officials say money currently set aside in each project's budget covers "the majority" of the $20 million fee. What these officials and Huber, Hunt & Nichols executives are "arguing about is that amount over and above what's already contained in the different budgets for the projects," according to retiring City Manager Don Bown. That figure, ranging between $3 million to $5 million, would have to be funded elsewhere. Perhaps a portion could be subtracted from the $10.78 million being paid to current Project Coordinator Frankfurt-Short-Bruza, but Bown says trying to pry money from FSB will be nearly impossible because the firm's contract contains little in the way of construction management services that overlap with Huber, Hunt & Nichols' duties. Selling the deal to the Oklahoma City Council without cutting something from FSB's contract, however, would be difficult at best because of extreme opposition from council members such as Ward 5's Jerry Foshee, who has already gone on record as opposing any deal that doesn't take money away from FSB. Also complicating the matter is a state law requiring municipalities to actually have the money on hand, or encumbered, before entering into a contract. That in turn could mean that $20 million would have to be trimmed from the entire MAPS deal in order to fund a contract with HHN. FSB officials, noting they had heard of the $20 million fee, said managing the remaining portions of MAPS as a construction manager would be a complicated proposal that would entail a fairly large staff. …

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