16hm business copyHope Mills has a lot of projects to bring to the table when the town takes part in the upcoming Building Business Rally at Fayetteville Technical Community College on May 22 in the Horace Sisk Gymnasium. 

The event, which runs from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. that day, offers local builders and contractors the chance to connect with representatives from local municipalities and schools to learn about various projects they’ve got in the works and, hopefully, increase the chances of the two working together.

Registration is available online at faybids.com or at the door the day of the event, said Chancer McLaughlin, the development and planning administrator for the town of Hope Mills.

“It’s an event intended to bring area purchasing offices together, to be able to provide opportunities for local businesses to bid on municipal projects,’’ he said. “It’s almost like a one-stop shop in terms of businesses being able to come and find out about these opportunities.’’

While, in most cases, municipalities are required to take the low bid in a competitive search for the best deal, McLaughlin said what the rally does most of all is make smaller local contractors aware of the projects that are available.

“Basically, you have 10 purchasing offices, 12 business support programs, everybody from the town of Hope Mills, PWC, city of Fayetteville, Cumberland County Schools, Hoke County, city of Spring Lake – all of us will be there to provide information to any local business that would like to do business with these municipalities.

“We’re definitely trying to push for an increase in local participation so they can be prepared for these opportunities as well,’’ McLaughlin said. “It’s not about being able to get a lower bid. It’s really just to know about the bid opportunity. I don’t think there’s anything we’re going to provide that will allow someone’s light bulb to go on and say, ‘This will teach me how to become a lower bidder.’’’

McLaughlin said the gathering could be a real plus to small builders and contractors who might encounter a larger contractor they could connect with. “Local contractors will know who the big contractors are, so they can link up that way,’’ he said. “There may be bid packages for those smaller businesses, things they can do directly. It’s definitely an opportunity for these smaller businesses to grow.’’

McLaughlin said Hope Mills has a five-year list of projects that it will be sharing at the meeting.

“Our total from fiscal year 2017 to 2022 is $34 million, so that’s what we’ll have in terms of available expenditures we’re projecting,’’ he said.

Some of the bigger projects on the Hope Mills list are a joint services building for the fire and police departments, the future construction being discussed on the old Hope Mills Golf Course property, the planned Heritage Park and the proposed town museum.

“It’s really a projection of upcoming opportunities and trying to find the best way to get this information out there so it increases their opportunity to bid on these projects,’’ McLaughlin said.

“The town of Hope Mills is definitely committed to supporting local businesses. We are eager to be apart of this program.’’

For further information on the Building Business Rally, visit faybids.com or call Lexi Hasapis at PWC at 910-223-4607.

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