‘Defective work’ delays school

| 26/05/2011

(CNS): The education minister has said that of all the problems plaguing the development of the new high schools the issue of the poor standard of work by the former general contractor has been the main cause of the delay in completing the Clifton Hunter campus. Rolston Anglin said that it was not design changes or government budget considerations that  slowed down the project but the need to repair the defective work by Tom Jones International (TJI) which has cost both time and money. The minister said the extent of the defective work had been so significant that putting it right may well exceed his project manager’s recent estimate of over $2 million.

Despite issuing non-conforming notices to the contractor, Anglin said TJI did not repair the defective work but he said the cost would eventually be charged back against the former contractor. In the meantime government has had to pay for roofing work, windows, exterior door frames and exterior wall finish work, which were all impacted by what he said was “defective concrete work.”

The minister said the shoddy work had a far greater impact on slowing things down than any of the changes that his ministry had decided to make to the original plans or any other considerations.

“Getting the building watertight is critical to the interior finish work and progress on almost every window and door opening was impacted,” he explained. “The project was delayed because of the general contractor's breaches and the resulting need for a construction manager, and this meant that funding decisions had to be phased.”

Anglin said the government would not have had to phase the high schooldevelopment projects had it been for the former general contractor's poor standard of work.  “The delay and the additional costs have been incurred solely as a result of the general contractor's actions,” Anglin told CNS this week.

Of all the problems related to the projects, he added, “the general contractor’s actions have thus proved to be the most problematic, not least because they are at the root of a number of subsequent challenges, including repairing the deficient work, as well as getting a construction manager on board and procuring the services for the trade scopes of work.”

The problems are most acute, Anglin said, at the Clifton Hunter Campus in Frank Sound as work there was more advanced than at the new John Gray High School site, but the minister added that there was deficient work at that campus too and similar repair work had to be undertaken.

The former contractor walked off the government job in November 2009 over a dispute regarding payment. Since then TJI has been involved in a courtroom dispute with the ministry of education. Following a hearing in which government failed to have the claims by TJI dismissed the case is expected to go to a full trial.

Following the latest comments by both the minister and David Bennoit, the project manager now employed by the education department to oversee the phased development of the schools, Tom Jones International has denied the allegations of defective work. Although the minister said that the contractor was issued with notices, TJI claimed through its spokesperson, David Legge, that it had not been informed by the ministry of any deficiencies in the work.

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Category: Politics

Comments (62)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    It's no wonder there are defects..what is a singer doing building schools in Grand Cayman?

    let's see him sing his way out of this mess… 

  2. Anonymous says:

    I think it's more a case of "defective politicians" who approved the overpriced school projects in the first place.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Who is the watch dog for the new manager Mr. Benoit?

    It seems that the more "problems" he can find with the schools the longer he will be imployed thus costing the Caymanian taxpayer more money. This looks like a conflict of interest that could be costly.

    Does anyone know what experience Beniot has?  Does he have a website?  Has he built a school or building of this maginitude?

  4. Anonymous says:

    People this is all a smoke screen. I worked on both of these school projects and there was nothing wrong with the work. You must keep in mind a few things.

    1. This Government broke a contract with TJI and is in a legal battle thus a case needs to be built

    2. This Government dont have the funds to complete theseschool right now, so stall tatics are in full effect

    3. When election time comes around again this Government will need to point fingers and lay blame

    Need i say more, its all politricks 

    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe Rolston Anglin is enhaling as well as blowing the smoke.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, they say they don't have the money to finish them but they have the money to add new classrooms for reception years for ALL the district primary schools. That's how you get votes in the next election, disgraceful behaviour.

    • Anonymous says:

      why didnt u ensure their was a performamce bond????? apparently no one from
      education thought this was important and proceeded ahead against the recommendations
      the advise of those that knew better.
      if they. had demanded a bond, this whole problem would never have arisen and
      the schools would have been completed by now…..

    • Anonymous says:

      I certainly smell a rat…We need to know more about the contracts for the school that went overseas. My company gave up bidding because all the cards are stacked in favor of one or two Caymanian businesses and they rest are for certain overseas contractors that basically drop the product of to Miami and Cayman Government sends them a check overseas. Not a bit of it circulates in Cayman..

      Something stinks to high heaven and I can't wait to see the Auditor General's report on the schools or even and FOI report.

  5. Just Sayin' says:

    Defective Government delays peoples mortgagepayments.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is Govt Hogwash….talk about reaching for straws and trying to pull the wool over our eyes.

      Get rid of these bums NOW.

  6. anonymous says:

    ppm=defective work!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    At least the UDP's Hurricane Hilton Shelter is not as costly as the PPM's School project. And the former is more needed than the latter.

    • Anonymous says:

      That is a very poor excuse you are putting up for your party. First, while the high schools were unduly expensive it is obvious that no comparison can be made to the Brac Hurricane Hilton in terms of the numbers it was intended to accomodate or the purpose it was intended to serve. Second, there is absolutely no doubt at all that we were in need of new schools and there is equally no doubt that there was no need whatsoever for the Hurricane Hilton.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Question Question Question  why are they so many ground breakings going on with these schools AND THERE IS NO MONEY by Mr. Bush Account. Mr. Anglin can you please let us the people of this country know where this money is coming from to build at Sir John A. Cumber, George  Town Primary, Savannah Primary whos next to get a lil dirt throw in one corner as ground breaking WHERE  is this money coming from to do these projects ??????? there has to be Money somewhere come on now MacMac  tell the truth where is the money.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Honestly  I for one is so sick and tierd of this bleam game. Stop the BS your are all Adults start acting like it. If Mr. Anglin knows that Tom Jones has made a mess of this why isnt the Government taking action towards this is . Mr. Bush sing song is that the counrty is broke but all he can talk about cutting civil service when Tom Dick andRITZ owes this country Millions why dont they collect it. I for one havent seen NOTHEN that this government has done since they have been elected besides run up and down travelling the world. Notice to all of you Elected members  the people is FED UP.


    • Anonymous says:

      Excellent point.

      Mr. Bush, what are you doing to collect the millions of dollars owed the Cayman Islands government by developer Michael Ryan?


      • Anonymous says:

        He is not doing anything to collect them money.  You have to remember that Mr. Ryan is a member of the "club".  He does not have to pay.  But the Civil Servants and the people of cayman are not so it comes out of our pockets.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Those who do not have the competence required blame others for their failures.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Blame, blame, blame – I understand that the government has commissioned one of their cronies to produce a million dollar report proving that the PPM was responsible for the extinction of the dinosaurs – If the report comes out in a little over 2 years it may be the only report of this government that is credible.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Sorry, but the school is oversized and too costly for what was needed to begin with.  This project sould have been done in phases.  Secondly, if the contractors did a shoddy job why was it not noticed until now and thirdly, WHY ARE THEY NOT BEING SUED TO RECOUP THE COSTS?  Tell us who the Caymanian entities are in Tom Jones International while you're at it.

    • stephanie says:

      Started by PPM, UDP is finishing the project at a more afforable cost. Thank Goodness.  Not ever the Hurricane Hilton project (needed very much for emergency) is as expensive as this school project.

  13. Anonymous says:

    With incompetent project management, what can you expect?

    Which government official was managing the project?

  14. Anonymous says:

    Remind me, I seem to remember that Tom Jones International hired Caymanian sub-contractors to do the work.

    • Anonymous says:

      don't matter… TJ was in charge. It's the private sector, not government, where no one has any responsibility

  15. The Crown says:

    You need some Caymanian's to work bobo? 

    • Dick Shaugneary says:

      Instead of the Oxford Comma we should refer to the Cayman Apostrophe.  The Cayman Apostrophe can simply be inserted at random before or after the "s" in any noun regardless of whether there is any possessive sense attached to the use of the noun. 

      • The Crown says:

        Now your thinking in a plural liberal manner,so there'''s hope that one day you wont be bound hand,foot,mind & tongue to the queens English.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Just more excuses from an incompetent Minister of Education.

    How is defective work and phasing of new work connected.

    "Hey Joe, these two walls are defective.  I have an idea, lets fix one this now and then we will wait a while and fix the other some other time."

    This is obviously a cover up for the lack of funding for the project and the overall mismanagment on behalf of the Ministry team.


    • Anonymous says:

      You do not know what you are talking about,It is so obvious you just want to put down Rolston. I have been in the building trade for the last 40 years, and yes shoddy works can delay progress of the project, by far.

      The school children in China know that we do not have the  sufficient funds, at the moment to finish the schools, just remember these schools are for your children and my children.

      Rolston did admit there are insuffient funds at the moment to finish the schools, I see no cover up on his side,  lets try and give more support to getting them finish and stop the damn politics.

      As I recall hearing, there are over 200 workers on the Frank sound school site, do you think they are working for free? 

      • Anonymous says:

        If the Cayman Islands government does not have the money to finish the schools they have started work on, then why are they starting work on other schools?


        • Anonymous says:

          they're not…its just good photo opportunities…

        • anon says:

          They're actually doing the work of renovations that PPM should have done before starting their massive and expensive project in Frank Sound.

          • Anonymous says:

            Renovations?  Such as… "officials broke ground on a NEW two-story, eight classroom addition to John A Cumber Primary School"  –  Caymanian Compass, 25 April 2011.

            That's in West Bay, by the way.

            • Anonymous says:

              or perhaps "renovations" such as:  Savannah Primary Groundbreaking  –  "The new project will add a BRAND NEW building on the existing land at Savannah Primary…"  Cayman27.com.ky, 26 May 2011

              • jeffrey says:

                yes…. of course, and if the PPM had from the start, invested in these renovations in the first place, we wouldn't had need such a massive incomplete school in Frank Sound. So I think UDP is doing a job there.

                • Anonymous says:

                  Renovation, for the uninitiated, means to "restore to a former better state (as by cleaning, repairing, or rebuilding)".  Clearly, if you are building new, then you are not renovating.

                  What is going on are not renovations but new construction – construction that the Cayman Islands government allegedly cannot afford.

                  Even if these projects were renovations, how would "renovating" a primary school alleviate the need for a high school at Frank Sound?

                  I agree.  I think the UDP is "doing a job" on all of us.


  17. Michael says:

    I hope they delay the work and at least start with one of the projects to boost our economy; or, else the UK will have no choice but to step in and take over the island's finances like it did in TCI, and it won't be pretty when they enforce property tax on us. Either we support a project or tear down every single project that is proposed by the government.

    We shouldn't be wasting all our time on a school when unemployment, loss of jobs are on the increase.

    If we don't want to oust the Premier right away, why should the country's economy be held hostage by protestors who are wasting valuable time towards balancing our budget and engaging in projects (like the East End Port) that would boost the economy?

    This does not make any sense!

    An EIA has been conducted, what more do these protestors want??  What suggestions they have or projects proposed???

    • The Crown says:

      First of all Mike,imposing direct taxation is not a dire straight of the UK but a wish. Second the Uk will tread lightly in assuming Cayman is identical to T & C. The Uk has to first explain the numerous policy short coming's we the Caymanian people have endured ie: while being a oversea's territory the Cayman Islands does not have in place a basic form of Human Rights,this being 2011 & why have colonies remained if they contribute nothing to the Uk? Additionally in many respect's we are expected to mirror the Uk. But in relation to conservation & law's protecting thing's of cultural,historical importance we do not mirror the Uk in this regard at all nor many of our neighbour's. One cannot remove so much as a shrub in many part's of England. Building's that are centuries old are zealously protected. They are aware of all these matter's but pretend to be afraid of Tweaky.

    • Anonymous says:

      You know what the protesters want, they want the power, fame and money they will receive whenever the country's  economy is up and running, which is going to happen very soon now.

      Have you ever ask yourself, why they want to take over the running of the Government, at the same time saying that the country is being destroyed by developers… these same developers that they will need to build our economy…ironic, I would say!

      If Mac and his colleagues were doing the country that bad, i would'nt want to be fighting them to take it over….this is lunacy!

      When everyone is working and paying their bills they wont be paying these protesters any mind.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Who was the project manager? Surely all work would have been verified by the project manager before any interim payments were authorized?

    • Anonymous says:

      Tom Jones had their own inhouse project manager.

      • Anonymous says:

        All general contractors have project managers, the client on a project also needs a project manager of some sorrt too though, they fill two very different roles.

        • Anonymous says:

          Ask Alden the client, who his project manager was, at the time Tom Jones were on site.

  19. Anonymous says:

    If it is proven in court that Tom Jones International did the work that they were paid to do, I hope that Minister Anglin is dragged through George Town by his XXXX.


    • Anonymous says:

      You should be dragged through the streets of Cayman for making that stupid and hatefull comment,  you know as much about construction,  as much as i know about building a space ship.

      The proof are there for all to see, XXXX Why dont you go on site to learn the facts, and stop listening to gossip, and nasty politics.

      • Anonymous says:

        Didn't say I knew anything about construction.  I said, "if it is proven in court".


      • Anonymous says:

        If it is "stupid and hatefu"l to say Minister Anglin should be dragged through the streets of Cayman, why is it not stupid and hateful for you to say so about the poster?  

  20. Anonymous says:

    another day, another delay, another nonsensical excuse from this shambles of a government…..

  21. Anonymous says:

    what nonsense, just another case of anglin dodging responsibility……

    defective work could have been identified and addressed any time over the last 2 years….why now?

    • Anonymous says:

      It is simple, how long one takes to find out the infidility of one's spouse?


  22. Anonymous says:


  23. Anonymous says:

    did so

  24. Anonymous says:

    did not

  25. The Beaver says:

    no wonder that many kids graduate illiterate… 

    “Getting the building watertight are critical to the interior finish work and progress on almost every window and door opening was impacted,” he explained. “The project was delayed because of the general contractor's breaches and the resulting need for a construction manager, and this meant that funding decisions had to be phased.”


  26. noname says:

    I believe it is time to ask:  Who are the principals of Tom Jones International?

  27. M - Government Supporter says:

    Sorry, but completing the construction of a school in frank sound, is not what's going to put food on our tables!  And after rejecting all projects, including the East End Port that would create jobs, how can anyone say that the building of this school will better our economy?  If we don't focus on bettering this economy, we are left at mercy to a British dictatorship like in TCI. 

    • The Watchers says:

      Complete economic failure of Cayman is actually what you will be facing.  You might want Mother England to come and help, because the civil service will simply stop once the final amount of money is borrowed and spent, and there is nothing left to make payroll with.  All projects terminate.  Game over.

      Notably the Miller Report said that if Cayman didn't make the changes it recommended then what is happening now would happen.  So now it's happening.  I wonder if anyone wants to dust off that report and skip to the last chapter of the story (so to speak).  It ends up with Cayman collapsing wholly.  Any voters tracking the end game of this course?

      • Joe B says:

        Amazing that only you and I understand this concept enough to see it happening.  Its like watdching a buss full of people looking straight ahead and going backwards toward a cliff.

      • Anonymous2 says:

        God forbid that such a thing happens. The UK has already made foolish decisions by their acts of colonialism, I don't think they will want to do the same acts in the Cayman Islands against the people.

    • catherine says:

      Let Mr. Miller, Arden, and crew protest all they want.  It is their freedom of speech.  XXXX If the UK want to take us over because of an economic downturn; at least, we saved the island from this project not in the interest of the people.

      No one wants a dictatorship whether a British one or a Local one. I am all for democracy and the people's freedom to govern themselves. But I feel we have to take a risks too. We can't allow people to come here and rob us from what should be rightfully ours. I feel the UK will not just take us over without a good reason.  

      We just can't sit down and keep our mouths closed whether its the threat of independence or a dictatorship – we have to stand up for our rights.