Review of contractor invoices raises a number of questions

City councilmembers need to do more than find out why some contractors’ invoices can’t be properly documented.

They need to find out why, in at least one instance, they are being charged for a service that is not spelled out in a contract.

Case in point: The company hired to do street repairs as well as water main work, has a special, more costly, charge for working on commercial water lines. Normally, the company, CPI, charges $800 for cutting and capping a water line for a house.

But for a business or factory, the charge is much higher, at $2,100.

The auditing company hired by former Acting City Manager Erik Tungate used that invoice as an example of some invoices that could not be documented.

So how is it that the service was not mentioned in CPI’s contract? No one knows. But more importantly, it raises the question of whether there are other contractual shortcomings.

The investigation into figuring out the reasons other bills don’t match up is far from over.

It’s not important determining who failed to include every conceivable charge in the contract with CPI, but it is important to find out if there are other missing charges in the contract, and then to rebid those parts out.

The city is looking for ways to save money, and one way is to make sure all the contracts are complete.

Obviously, when there is a price for a service missing, we are at the mercy of contractors to charge us a fair price.

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