Lot’s of Fluff, but little detail


Well, what else can we expect from the administration but a lot of smoke and mirrors? Nevermind that the council still has yet to see a report about the piss poor siding job, now they want to talk about local contractors. Good stuff.

For almost a year several city councilors have been asking for a detailed report from the public works department and Mortenson on what local contractors were used and how much local materials were purchased, and have not been given anything.

I’m not talking about a list of local companies and manufacturers who subcontracted their work out to state vendors. I want to see an actual list of local contractors who hired local workers and bought local manufactured products. Instead we just get a bunch of bull and fluff;

Going into the project, city officials set the goal of using 85 percent local labor. Last week, construction managers estimated that they slightly exceeded that goal.

“We knew our local contractors have the experience and the qualifications to construct this project for Sioux Falls and the state of South Dakota,” Mark Cotter, director of Public Works, said in an email. “As a community, we all benefit when we support one another.”

Reports from the city and Mortenson Construction, which is managing the project, show that local contractors were awarded more than $60 million worth of work. That’s closer to 65 percent of the project costs through July, but not reflected in that number is when contractors hire a local company to work for them.

Read the whole story, and you get the gist, a lot of money was moved through contractor offices in Sioux Falls, but without the real numbers about materials and labor, all we have is a bunch of fluff. Why not release the true numbers? Because you will realize that there isn’t a lot of sweat equity from Sioux Falls workers in this project, just a lot of greedy brokers.


#1 Pinnacle EC on 08.26.14 at 7:56 am

In Lincoln NE the same story, lies and construction methods were used.

Mortenson must have a how to book for people like Huether to use to cloud the process. Like “Turn to chapter 7: Subterfuge (or how to hide anything from the public).”

Chapter 11: How to make the public happy they are now in bankruptcy.

Chapter 13: How to hide construction flaws as design features.

How many chapters can you write?

#2 Sy on 08.26.14 at 9:23 am

What he means is some of the local work was performed under a non-local contractor’s contract. What that percentage is I don’t know.

Take the stone tops for example that we did, they were under Wilke Sanderson, who is a Minneapolis based casework & cabinet builder. We bid it to them, they billed Mortenson who billed the City..we did all the fabrication & install.

This isn’t uncommon on projects of this scale.

#3 l3wis on 08.26.14 at 9:29 am

Like I have said, don’t care about building a new EC or Indoor Pool, a majority of the voters have spoken, so we move forward. It is about the process and transparency to me. I don’t care about subcontractors or where the materials are coming from, what I do care about is truthfulness. Don’t tell us that a majority of the work on the EC is done locally when we are simply brokering the work out through a local contractor. Give us the ‘REAL’ figures. As someone said to me this morning, it is only wise to subcontract out some of the work for quality and value, and I agree 100%. But don’t lie to us about it.

#4 Titleist on 08.26.14 at 8:54 pm

“It is about the process …..”

Really, how do you have more process than an election?

Are you sure that it isn’t just because the local Tea Party lost?

#5 l3wis on 08.27.14 at 9:49 am

Titleast – Did you read my comment, I have said the voters want an EC and an Indoor Pool, I don’t have issue with that, though their was a lot of misdirection by the city before both elections. I just want the process of getting these places built to be transparent. We still don’t know what is going on with the siding, and the place opens in about 20 days. Not good.

#6 Dan Daily on 08.27.14 at 12:46 pm

Argus had story today. Lots of smoke & mirrors. City is saying cost was 115 million. Wasn’t it 183 million? How did 400 million debt happen? Joan Jett is first show. She’ll not bring a full house because of her problems with beef industry. What happened to the original first show? Schedule into 2015 is weak. Lots of better bigger EC’s along I-29 corridor. This will be another Washington Pavilion sinkhole. Next budget will include secret service for Huether. He can run but he can’t hide.

#7 Dan Daily on 08.27.14 at 12:49 pm

Numbers are in on local economy. Zero growth. Huether should only brag about his tennis game and developer sponsored junkets.

#8 KELO Infomercial on 08.27.14 at 6:14 pm

Is it just me or does it seem like KELO TV news at 6 and 10 is like watching infomercials for the Sanford Pentagon, Event Center or Sanford? Every single night it’s the same crap or being the PR department for the city. Do the other stations do it too? KDLT and KSFY?

#9 85thstuckee on 08.27.14 at 9:47 pm

Kelo info

We have state run media. I’m sure kelo doesn’t want to miss a dime with city sponsored ads for promotion that at most is propaganda.

Like l3wis comments. They don’t need to lie about all of this

#10 Dan Daily on 08.28.14 at 6:34 am

KDLT has done some honest reporting regarding the city. If they had the budget they’d do more. It seems journalism (especially local) suffers from the Internet & cable. CBS, NBC, ABC, & the Argus struggle for attention and can’t compete with better cable roaming & sites such as this. Haven’t you noticed more local commercials on cable networks? KELO has become another channel 16. I’ve deleted both from my channel selections.

#11 KELO Infomercial on 08.28.14 at 9:42 am

Thank you! Besides being a regular viewer of SDPB I’ll give KDLT a try for local or should I say Sioux Falls news since I’m so used to the rest of the state being ignored on KELO.

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