Kent County Council has said the difficulties caused by COVID-19 has meant it has had to delay tendering for the renewal of its highways services contract.
The council said that it had grounds to extend the contract because of the ‘extreme urgency’ of the circumstances brought about by the pandemic, adding that a change of contractor during the extension would “cause significant inconvenience and duplication of costs for the authority”.
As a result, current contractor, Amey will see its agreement extended by a further two years. The council said the extension past September 2021, would be for no more than two years, with April 2023 set as the provisional new date.
Kent has one of the largest road networks in the country with more than 5,000 miles of roads.
“This extension of the current contract is essential to ensure that all potential future providers can submit bids for the long term opportunity on a fair and more certain basis when they have the time and opportunity to access the information that the incumbent holds and take other necessary steps under that procurement free from lockdown/Covid-19 restrictions and uncertainties,” said the council.