By Ted AYALA
A brief tense exchange between Councilman Rafi Manoukian and Glendale Water and Power (GWP) representative Steve Lynn briefly lit up the city council meeting on Tuesday.
At the heart of the issue was the decision by the GWP to eliminate competitive bidding for the purchase of new water meters to be used as standard throughout the GWP’s customer base.
“My only concern is that we’re not being competitive,” said Manoukian. “We could be overcharged.”
Lynn was quick to deny that possibility.
“Badger Meters is the only one that makes the [GWP’s required meter]. There’s nobody else to get it from,” he explained, adding, “If we keep switching between meters, we’ll have all sorts of administrative problems and inventory problems. There’s technical reasons why we standardized the meters.”
Manoukian, however, was not pleased by Lynn’s assertion.
“Isn’t it better to get [the meters] from two suppliers?” he countered. “I don’t like dispensing with competitive bidding.”
Lynn was quick to assure Manoukian and the council that logistically it would be difficult to accept competitive bidding for a product that is only manufactured by one company.
Despite the brief exchange, Manoukian set his approval, along with the rest of the council’s, to award a three-year purchase order contract not to exceed $300,000.