Star Valley has paid $4,200 of a $7,500 contract to Bruce Varker for a streets and roads master plan. However, the consultant has done very little since April, town officials complained.
“What we have received is valueless,” Town Manager and Attorney Tim Grier told the Star Valley Town Council.
So, on Nov. 19 the council directed Grier to tell Varker to hit the road … and return 100 percent of the money the town has paid him.
Grier said Varker was supposed to have had the work completed some time ago so the town could make improvements during the warm weather.
Not having the streets and roads master plan also held up some of the work the town’s water master plan outlined.
The town manager said he had spoken directly to Varker about 10 weeks ago about the lack of work, but nothing changed. Star Valley Councilor Vern Leis has talked to Varker on the matter.
“We can’t depend on Varker,” Grier said, so he asked the council to consider directing him to make a legal request to have the money reimbursed.
Councilor Gary Coon asked if Varker had given any reason for not complying with the contract’s terms.
Leis said he didn’t “buy” the reasons offered. He said Varker told him he had three other jobs, he was out of town and was working on his son’s wedding.
Coon said the council should get out of the contract. Mayor Ronnie McDaniel thanked Leis for his efforts on behalf of the town, “We should drop Varker like a hot potato and decide (how much) we can get back.”
Councilor Barbara Hartwell moved to terminate the contract and seek a refund. Grier sought clarification about whether the council wanted him to sue Varker if necessary. The council then unanimously approved cancellation of the contract and taking action to get a refund, including litigation if necessary.