Devine fires water pipe contractors, project on hold

Work on Phase I of the City of Devine’s water pipe replacement project was suspended immediately following the City Council’s decision to fire the contracting firm Triun during an Emergency meeting on Friday, March 26.
“The Council voted to terminate the contract at the convenience of the City,” City Attorney Tom Cate said during an interview on March 29. “We agreed to part ways.”
City officials declined to discuss specific reasons for the decision, but Cate said the City was following the terms of its contract with Triun, formerly known as Gonzalez De La Garza, which stated the services could be terminated at any time.
“It’s disappointing,” Cate said. “It’s disappointing to us, it’s disappointing to them.”
Council instructed City Engineer J.R. Garcia to start plans and specs to continue the project, which must be put out to bid again.
“It’s not like we’re starting fresh,” Cate said. “There’s got to be some adjustments made, and then we’ve got to run this by the Water Board again because the Water Board is financing the project.”
The Texas Water Development Board awarded the City a $500,000 grant and $9.4 million in loans in March 2018 to fund the project.
“It’s unfortunate, but it’s where we find ourselves,” Cate said.
By Marly Davis
Staff Writer