I am not the only one sending in new testimony to the MDE (Minnesota Dept of Education) I haven’t read anyone else’s testimony but I thought you might be interested in what I’m telling them. I have some more I’ll be sending in, hopefully before the day is out.
Date: Thursday, October 18, 2007 7:35 AM
To: Audrey., Chas, Tom, Gary Glass
Cc: Kent Worley
Subject: Info on the Red Plan and JCI
Size: 11 KB
To the MDE staff
RE: Duluth’s review and comment
From: Harry Welty
I am sending you two emails. The first is from Kent Worley a top notch architect who is almost single handedly responsible for the public portion of what is probably the biggest single building project in Duluth History in the past fifty years – the I35 Highway expansion through downtown Duluth.
Kent has followed JCI’s progress and has grave misgivings about it. He asked me to forward his comments to you. Subsequently, I received a second email from a fellow I have no knowledge of, a Mr. Saccoman. I presume Kent sent him a blind copy of Kent’s email to me. Mr Saccoman affirms Kent’s comments and adds some interesting sidelights.
This is not all. Gary Glass, of Let Duluth Vote, has been investigating the JCI bidding process since the beginning of the Summer and has found a number of troubling things about it.
Well before the District sent out RFP’s, JCI employees were addressing the School Board about new buildings which suggests that they had an inside track long before the RFPs were sent out.
One component of the RFP’s was to design a building plan around educational programming. To date this has not occurred.
When Gary went to the District to ask for the JCI Contract it was marked “confidential” by the Superintendent. When Gary later showed the contract to two school board members, Tim Grover, and Laura Condon, they both told him they had never seen it before. In my years on the Board all contracts were printed in the monthly agenda for action by the school board.
Finally, I am going to add the contract language that the District has agreed to with JCI and that Kent Worley mentions in his email. It sets out the various rates of compensation that JCI will receive as it manages the construction of the Red Plan. It does indeed seem generous: I’ve recopied it from the letduluthvote website: http://www.letduluthvote.com/jciscompensation.htm
Good luck figuring out how much JCI will earn by the end of the project:
From the Master Agreement, ATTACHMENT C page 1 of 2:
3.0% Compensation For Basic Services as described in Attachment D, Johnson Controls’ compensation shall be computed as follows:
3.1 For Renovations, repairs, or remodels:
3.1.1 Compensation for Program Management computed at 2% of the total Construction Cost.
3.1.2 Plus compensation for Architectural Services computed at 8% of the related Architectural Construction Cost, and not total Construction Cost.
3.1.3 Plus compensation for Engineering Services computed at 9.5% of the related Engineering Construction Cost, and not the total Construction Cost.
3.1.4 Plus compensation for Commissioning Services computed at 2.5% of the related Commissioning Construction Costs, and not total Construction Costs.
3.1.5 Plus, for projects that utilize Construction Management where the Construction Manager is not the Constructor and where the mechanical portion of the project is less than 60% of the total Construction Cost, compensation for Construction Management Services computed at 5% of the total Construction Cost.
from ATTACHMENT C page 2 of 2:
3.2 For New Construction:
3.2.1 Compensation for Program Management computed at 2% of the total Construction Cost.
3.2.2 Plus compensation for Architectural Services computed at 7% of the related Architectural Construction Cost, and not total Construction Cost.
3.2.3 Plus compensation for Engineering Services computed at 8.5% of the related Engineering Construction Cost, and not the total Construction Cost.
3.2.4 Plus compensation for Commissioning Services computed at 2.5% of the related Commissioning Construction Costs, and not total Construction Costs.
3.2.5 Plus, for projects that utilize Construction Management where the Construction Manager is not the Constructor, compensation for Construction Management Services computed at 4% of the total Construction Cost.
EMAIL TO HARRY WELTY FROM KENT WORLEY TO PASS ON TO THE MDE
From: “Kent G. Worley”
Subject: ISD 709
Date: Thu, 18 Oct 2007 05:28:54 -0500
To Harry Welty
From Kent Worley, Landscape Architect
Date October 17, 2007
Harry, Please send this on to our Minnesota Education Commissioner, or anyone who is evaluating the ISD 709 proposal for the “Red Plan”.
First, we appreciate your careful reviews of what is being proposed for the Duluth School District, and we look forward to an opportunity for you to become a member of the Duluth Public School Board, especially because you have demonstrated your awareness of cost discipline and project quality control.
There is a huge expenditure of public funds which is part of the current school administration plan, which could, and should be avoided. It is the component called ‘Project Management”. ISD 709 has always had an in-house facilities & project management department, staffed by either an architect or a civil engineer, and with in-house support. If this department needs additional staff, additional architects/engineers can be added on a 5 or more year basis to cover the time period of construction.
I have worked with several public facilities, such as UMD in Duluth, and there are always in-house department and professional staff people whose responsibility includes all the preparation, interviewing and hiring of consultant A/E firms, construction advertising, construction bidding,
inspection or contract observation, construction observation, preparing and coordinating contractors, payment requests, change orders, construction meetings, public coordination such as utilities, and the myriad of necessary activities during key planning and construction activities which make up ‘project management’.
The very great advantage of having this function in-house is that this is the department which has to deal with the buildings, infrastructure, and numerous operational activities which need daily attention—forever! In-house quality control, accountability, awareness of all systems and cost accountability is always far superior compared to turning this immense responsibility over to a consultant. Consultant project managers do not have the same long term commitment and responsibility of the finished work as in-house personnel have. I am referring to accountability and quality of all things during planning and construction, as well as cost control by in-house personnel. No ‘fee’ incentive for construction cost changes exist for in-house project management, while this does exist under consultant project management. [reference fee schedules]
I am absolutely amazed that Project Management is about to be turned over to any consultant service for this size and complexity of construction For projects of this magnitude, it is completely imperative the district attain the far superior quality control of in-house personnel, not to speak of the cost savings – Even if 4 additional in-house architects/engineers make up this in-house Project Management team for 5 years, this should not cost more than [5 persons @ $100,000 per year] this is only $2.5 million—compare that to the fees to be paid to the consultant Project Manager—their contract has so many fees that no one can even total this cost. My rough estimate would be that this will cost no less than $15 million; I have heard even higher estimates.
It is this kind of in-attention to detail which is highly questionable. Other glaring examples include the consultant’s proposal to use an inadequate 26 acre site for a 1,500 student population high school when 50 to 55 acres of buildable land is the minimum state recommended size for such a facility – these kinds of proposals indicate poor pre-planning, excessive cost and less than ideal quality control of this out-of-scale project for Duluth.
Sincerely, Kent G. Worley, Landscape Architect
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EMAIL FROM ROGER SACCOMAN SECONDING KENT WORLEY’S ASSESSMENT
Date: Thu, 18 Oct 2007 8:41:00 -0500
From: R Saccoman
Subject: Fwd: ISD 709
Cc: Kent Worley
Mr. Welty — As follow up to the memorandum sent to you by Kent Worley, an additional comment or two: The concept of proceeding on a project which will affect Duluth young people for the next 100 years with an HVAC controls company in charge would be a complete mystery if not for the huge money exchanging hands. Johnson Controls has insufficient knowledge to manage the planning and design of a project — large or small. They have no committement to design, no understanding of planning issues, and no stake in Duluth other than to grab as much money as possible.
There is a State law which indicates that communities can pursue projects without referenda if one of the control companies (Honeywell or JCI) front the money and manage energy conservation measures to help return on investment. It’s bad policy. Real engineers who understand life cycle costing would dismiss this concept without working very hard to prove the absurdity of the accounting. But why should the professionals step up to work against a theory that ultimately pays a lot of them big money. So it goes. Your superintendent knows what he’s doing. He should be audited monthly.
Kent has presented (usually with passion) his opposition to big power interests ignoring the planning and vision of a City for their own interests. Kent is right. He’s always been right for Duluth. People in all the cities, towns and villages around the world are quick to look out of their area for advice. So often they completely miss the local expertise. Worley is one of the great landscape architects of our region. Duluth was lucky to have him around all these years, working hard without great personal gain to emphasize Duluth’s interests with integrity. My advice — listen to him. — Roger Saccoman