[StBernard] Embattled construction company lands new billion dollar contract

Westley Annis westley at da-parish.com
Wed Dec 30 08:52:34 EST 2009

Embattled construction company lands new billion dollar contract
Reported by: Jennifer Hale, Reporter
Email: jhale at fox8tv.net
Last Update: 12/29 7:00 pm

(FOX 8 News) St. Bernard - A Kenner construction company has landed a new
$1.8 million public contract in St. Bernard Parish.

Months after some St. Bernard parish leaders tried to fire JaRoy
Construction for allegedly shoddy work on a new fire station, the parish is
now awarding JaRoy a deal to build a new public works building.

St. Bernard's new state-of-the-art public works building will sit just off
Paris and West Agriculture.

FEMA is picking up the tab for the 2 story building.

"It will be designed to withstand 140 miles per hour wind," says Roy Gross,
vice president of field operations for JaRoy Construction Company.

JaRoy is also building the controversial Fire Station Number 5.

Several months ago, St. Bernard tried to fire JaRoy from that job claiming
shoddy work and a misplaced pilings.

JaRoy, confident of the quality of its work, agreed to pull up the slab and
start over so the project could continue, even though parish inspectors had
signed off on the work.

Meanwhile, the Attorney General's office launched an investigation.

"We feel at this point everything has been resolved and we're looking
forward to a positive relationship with St Bernard Parish," says Gross.

Now, Gross says Fire Station Number 5 is on track to be completed in April
2010 and the company is starting this job with a clean slate.

"A lot of it stems from the cooperation JaRoy gave from the previous
problems we had at fire station #5. We worked those problems out in a
positive manner," says Gross.

"We're hopeful. We're cautiously optimistic," says St. Bernard Parish
President Craig Taffaro.

JaRoy won the contract for the public works building because it was the
lowest bidder.

"We're going to go into it with our eyes wide open and follow the public bid
law to the letter," says Taffaro.

JaRoy plans to start construction Monday. Estimated completion date: this
summer, 7 months from now.

Meanwhile in Baton Rouge, the Attorney General's office continues its
investigation into JaRoy.

"We will continue to make sure we're protected every step of the way," says

If JaRoy is charged with any wrongdoing and cannot complete the Public Works
Building, Taffaro says he's prepared to call in the bond JaRoy is required
to post in order to finish the job.

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