Sept. 13, 2011 | The Alameda County Board of Supervisors approved Tuesday nearly $50,000 worth of additional payments to two road construction bids in Castro Valley as criticism grows over Nate Miley’s handling of the unincorporated areas.

A contract approved in October 2010 for Galedridge Construction of Alviso costing over $103,000 for road construction in Castro Valley was modified adding over $23,000 in additional costs. According to a staff report, the contractor found unsuitable sub-surface soil that called for increased amount of of soil to stabilize the road for pavement. An additional drainage system was also including for potential drainage problems.

A county report declared putting the additional work up for bid would be “competitively unavailing for usual public bidding.” Construction for the project began in November 2010.

An additional outlay for another project located on Center Street in Castro Valley was also approved Tuesday. The county approved the construction last March. Work began in June, but the contractor Malachi Paving & Grinding, Inc. of Oakland found heavy rains last winter “likely worsened the embankment erosion” between the time the company agreed to the project and the start on construction this summer.

The net increase in costs to the county increased by over $22,000, but since the initial contract was less than $100,000 the change is not subject to certain county requirements as larger projects might encounter.

The issue of  major road construction in unincorporated Castro Valley has proven to be a problem for Alameda County Supervisor Nate Miley, who represents the area. Numerous shop owners and residents in the town have been vocal about continuing construction work on its major thoroughfare on Castro Valley Boulevard. Some business owners claim the project has deeply undercut their profitability.

The chorus of anger has risen to such a tenor that some East Bay politicos are beginning to speculate whether Miley’s seat on the board is susceptible to a challenge. A county supervisor losing re-election is a very rare occurence on a board widely known to have the job stability of a U.S. Supreme Court justice. But, the net loss of a portion of his base in Oakland through county redistricting in exchange for Pleasanton still confounds many who believe the burgeoning white demographic in the Tri-Valley knows very little about Miley.