Price tag to repair Oroville Dam: $275,443,850
April 15, 2017
• State finds three bidders for the work
• All exceed state’s estimate
California taxpayers: Open those wallets! It’s going to cost either taxpayers or customers of the State Water Project – roughly 23 million out of a state population of 39 million – at least $275,443,850 to repair damage to the spillways at Oroville Dam.
And that’s just to get it repaired enough so the structures can withstand what might be another wet winter.
The dam’s spillways were damaged in February as the Department of Water Resources was releasing water from Lake Oroville lest it rise above the top of the dam and thus threaten the entire structure.
As the spillways began to crumble, 180,000 residents who lived downstream of the dam were evacuated.
The bids are for work to implement DWR’s Oroville spillway recovery plan so a system is in place by November 1 that can safely accommodate next winter’s weather.
The bids will be reviewed by DWR for accuracy and completeness over the weekend. DWR expects to award the work as soon as Monday, April 17.
But details of the work to be done will be kept hidden from the public. The DWR claims that’s because revealing the details could threaten national security.
The contractors, their state and their bid amounts are”
• Kiewit Infrastructure West Co., headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska: $275,443,850
• Barnard Ames JV, of Bozeman, Montana: $276,965,690
• Oroville Dam Constructors, the headquarters of which was not provided by DWR: $344,129,100
DWR’s estimate for the work was a tad less: $220,100,000.
A notice to begin work will be issued within days of awarding the contract, the state says.