Board rejects all bids for construction of new school

OXFORD — The Oxford School Board has rejected all bids for the construction of the new high school.

The high school’s construction is the centerpiece of the district’s building program.

Schools Superintendent Brian Harvey tells the Oxford Eagle the board has no authority to negotiate with any contractor and can only accept the project as bid.

“This left us outside of the range of what we can afford. The only thing left is to reject the bids. There is nothing else we can do. We cannot afford the amount of either of the bids,” Harvey said.

Plans to build the new high school for about $30 million hit a snag after construction bids came back in March for around $37 million to $41 million. The bids did not include the cost of constructing a new performing arts building.

The cost of new athletic fields was never part of the bid. They are planned for future construction.

The school board has since allocated $34 million for the high school and will meet May 3 to discuss the next steps.

The attorney general’s office said the district could alter the amount allocated before the bids go out again.

An attorney general’s opinion does not carry the weight of law but is designed to provide public entities a level of protection in court.

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