Letter: Project up for bid
The City of Prescott has obviously gotten the message that its contract for a hotel on downtown West Granite Creek park land had serious problems. In August, City Council had approved a no-bid lease/purchase contract with WSH Hospitality. Now the city has published a public notice supposedly putting the project up for bid.
Is the city taking an action that will get the project on a different track – but only in a way that will still inevitably lead to a train wreck? Also, the question remains whether the city is still intent on dealing only with WSH at a price for city property well below its value.
The notice says any bidder must have a “proven track record of successfully developing and operating hotels and lodging in northern Arizona.” Why restrict the bidders to such a narrow field? By doing so, Prescott is diminishing the chances the taxpayers will get the highest price for the property. Why can’t a successful Phoenix-based hotel developer who has several hotels in the Valley be able to bid? Does the city really want a fair process or is it just going through the paces to try to comply with state and city laws while still dealing only with WSH?
The public notice has no deadline listed for submission of bids. It just states: “Any proposal must be submitted prior to the date the City Council considers approval of the subject lease at a duly noticed meeting.” That’s strange – but not the first strange thing about this project.
The public needs to be vigilant to assure this project is handled fairly and legally.