Honolulu Rail Award Contested Case Brings Ire

Former City Council Member Tom Berg
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Photo: Emily Metcalf

BY CITY COUNCIL MEMBER TOM BERG – On the rail car award to Ansaldo , if the attorneys that represent the city’s interests are triumphant, the taxpayer on Oahu will be paying $250 million more than needed to build and maintain the rail cars and lose out on the opportunity to infuse jobs for Oahu’s residents.

Shouldn’t we be cheering on the protester to win their court case so we can save money and jobs?  The losing bidder in the procurement process advocated building the rail cars here-  creating 150 local jobs on Oahu instead of in California.   The losing bidder could also build and maintain the rail cars for $250 million less than what Ansaldo proposed.
The scoring techniques used in the procurement process to find Ansaldo as the best deal for Oahu’s taxpayers reflects a procurement process off-track.  The City Council of Honolulu should hear my resolution 11-109 that urges the bidding process be reevaluated.  Saving jobs and salvaging $250 million in the process should be the pursuit of HART, the city council, and the mayor, and not the other way around.
Link to Resolution 11-109
Link to Video Recorded 6-15-2011 TOWN HALL MEETING/Ewa on RAIL: