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DISSATISFIED WITH CONTRACTOR’S PERFORMANCE PSS weighs termination of Kagman school contractor

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Posted on Jul 12 1999
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The Public School Sytem has warned to terminate the contract of Pac United Corp. if it doesn’t “shape up” and improve its work on Kagman school project, according to sources who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Sources said Friday that PSS is frustrated with the pace and performance of Pac United, which is undertaking the construction of Kagman Elementary School.

A PSS official, who asked not to be named, said the agency has suspended the contractor’s precast works allegedly because of the inferior quality of materials being used and the bad alignment of structures being installed.

PSS wrote to Pac United’s project manager, Xiaochen Wang, demanding “satisfactory response and solution” to the “complications” of the project.

The $6 million project was set for completion by October, but PSS said the rate of progress of the contractor’s work indicates that the school would not be completed until April.

“At the rate things are going, PSS would not be able to open the school this coming school year as it was originally planned,” the source said.

In a July 6 letter to Wang, PSS noted that the project “is now 10 weeks behind schedule.”

“The progress of erection for precast wall panels has been 2 and 3 per day,” PSS wrote. “At this current rate, assuming the project can begin again at the same pace, it will take approximately 24.8 weeks to complete erection of the precast wall panels alone.”

The Kagman school, PSS’ major capital infrastructure project, is 80 percent funded by the federal government through the Office of Insular Affairs (OIA). The remaining 20 percent of the project cost comes from the local matching fund.

OIA’s federal project coordinator Keith Aughenbaugh said the insular office “is very concerned about the status and the outcome of the project.”

“We try to stay out of it and let PSS deal with the problems but we’re keeping a close eye on it,” Aughenbaugh said.

In its letter to Wang, PSS complained about the contractor’s failure to conform with the terms of the contract.

For example, roof panels for one of the buildings were not cast according to the structural design and rebar specifications stipulated in the contract.

“The quality of the formwork in inconsistent and the method for reveal casting is inefficient,” PSS said.

“We suggested the use of metal bars for reveal casting and better quality control for the formwork. To date, the formwork remains the same, ad there have been no improvements to the reveal casting methods,” PSS said.

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