PANAMA CITY - Panama City commissioners had planned for a lighthouse to be the focal point of the marina renovation project downtown. The city's consultant AECOM estimated it would cost around $800,000, but the lowest bid came in at twice that price.
"We cannot tolerate that. We were told one thing by our consulting company, our engineers - and then now we're told another thing," said commissioner Billy Rader. "That dog's not gonna hunt with me."
But Easter Shipbuilding owner Brian D'Isernia is apparently offering to help.
"He told me that he had built a lighthouse before. So, he knows what the budget number is. He's gonna take a look at the plans and see if they can help us do this at the amount of money that we originally thought it was gonna cost," said Mayor Greg Brudnicki.
City engineers and other consultants at Monday night's meeting are skeptical, but Mayor Brudnicki said it's worth a shot.
"Hopefully, if he comes in Mr. D'Isernia can come in and do that lighthouse for us as what we thought it was gonna cost us originally - I'll be ecstatic."
Commissioners also passed a tentative budget in Monday night's meeting, with a cut in the millage rate. They plan to approve the final budget during a special meeting September 24.