LIHU’E – The County of Kaua’i has decided to operate the Kaua’i Resource Buyback Center on an interim basis after failing to find a qualified bidder to run the $2.2 million facility.
“On the advice of Economic Development Administration, the county has begun formulating a backup plan for use of the facility,” stated Gini Kapali, director of the Office of Economic Development.
Federal funding for the facility was provided through an Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant for the purpose of diverting waste from the landfill, creating jobs and generating revenue.
Finance director Wallace G. Rezentes Jr. said the county will plan for use of the buyback center as a county-operated recycling and educational facility.
On three occasions, the county has invited bidders to submit proposals for operating recycling or reuse operations in the center. The first request for proposals generated one bid, which was incomplete and did not meet the minimum criteria.
The second request was didn’t produce any bids, and the final request drew one proposal, which was rejected by the county’s evaluation committee last week because the offer did not fulfill the original purpose of the project and did not satisfy some criteria.
“The committee recommended denial of the application, and I concur with their decision,” stated Rezentes.
After three unsuccessful attempts to find an operator, EDA is encouraging the county to assume a management role at the buyback center.
Office of Economic Development administers the grant for EDA.
In the next few weeks, the administration will be working closely with EDA and the County Council to finalize the interim plan which will follow EDA’s original criteria.