Konrad Mechanical Inc., a company of which Grand Forks mayoral candidate Frank Konrad, is president, did not actually bid on the water meter installation project as stated in the front page story in the Grand Forks Gazette dated Nov. 12.
The Gazette’s story said Konrad Mechanical Inc. was one of three bidders for the water meter installation contract. That was incorrect. Konrad’s company was one of three companies to submit an Expression of Interest, which occurs before the City moves to the actual bidding process.
The Gazette apologizes to Mr. Konrad for this error, and any discreditation it caused.
“We needed to get this story right, which is why we are correcting it now,” said Publisher Chuck Bennett. “There is definitely an important difference between bidding for a job and only submitting an expression of interest and we are sorry for our error on this.”
In an interview with the Gazette yesterday, Mr. Konrad said he submitted an expression of interest in regards to the city’s water meter project on Jan. 29; however, at a City of Grand Forks Committee of the Whole Meeting in early February, he publicly stated his opposition to the project. He also said that although he hadn’t yet received a denial of this “pre-qualification,” he had made up his mind that he was against the project completely and that he wouldn’t have moved onto the bidding process even if he was invited to do so.
“I would have gracefully declined,” Mr. Konrad said.
The City website states: As part of the public process, the City of Grand Forks (through Urban Systems Limited), publicly advertised for proponents to submit their expressions of interest for the Water Meter Supply and Installation as a pre-qualification of proponents. Mr. Konrad told the Gazette Wednesday that he submitted the expression of interest for the project in January. At the end of February, he was told his expression would be denied.
“It was a request for expression of interest on a pre-qualification basis,” he said.
Konrad said “the company never got to the bidding process”.
“It was just an expression of interest,” he said. “That expression of interest was never pusued. It never went any further.”
We, the Grand Forks Gazette, regretfully apologizes, for any loss of public support, Mr. Konrad may have suffered, due to this error on our part, and hopefully the damage caused by this inaccurate reporting, will not affect his campaign.