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Judge upholds temporary restraining order in Beltway paving lawsuit

Updated Monday, April 27, 2009 | 5:05 p.m.

Beltway widening

A District Court judge upheld a temporary restraining order against Clark County today, halting the award of a $116.8 million bid for construction on the northern 215 Beltway.

Fisher Sand and Gravel filed a challenge to the award of the contract on April 22 because its submitted bid was $4.6 million less than the bid County Commissioners accepted from Las Vegas Paving.

In the challenge, Fisher has asked Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez to overrule the commission’s decision based on state statutes requiring public projects to be awarded to the best bid.

Commissioners awarded the construction contract to Las Vegas Paving on April 21 to convert the existing roadway into a four-lane highway from Tenaya Way to Decatur Boulevard with interchanges at Jones Boulevard and Decatur.

When the bids were announced in January, Las Vegas Paving filed a protest claiming two of Fisher’s subcontractors lacked the appropriate contractor’s license to perform highway construction.

Commissioners upheld the protest even though county staff and its attorney said the subcontractors, Bravo Underground and Pipes Paving, were in compliance.

Tom Dillard, a private practice attorney representing the county, said the commissioners had the discretion to choose as they did based on the parameters of state law.

"It was a reasonable decision," he said.

Fisher also claims Las Vegas Paving filed the protest after the statutory five-day window had closed.

Along with upholding the temporary restraining order, Gonzalez also allowed Las Vegas Paving and Bravo to join the legal action.

A hearing has been scheduled for May 11 on whether to allow a preliminary injunction.

CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect that the restraining order was upheld and a decision on the injunction is pending.

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