Sarasota News Leader

10/5/12

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CONTRACTOR CONTROVERSY In mid-May, work was well under way at the site of the Walmart on North Tamiami Trail in Sara- sota. Photo by Norman Schimmel FIRM SAYS IT IS WAITING TO BE PAID BEFORE IT CAN SETTLE WITH SUBCONTRACTORS IN 'ATYPICAL' WORK ARRANGEMENT By Cooper Levey-Baker Associate Editor Two subcontractors tell The Sarasota News Leader they have not been paid for work completed at the new North Tamiami Trail Walmart back in August, an allegation the builder denies. According to Rob Urbanek, his Fernandina Beach company Xtreme SPD originally was hired by the Sarasota construction firm Kel- logg & Kimsey to do light interior work on the new Walmart, what he calls in an email "'non-critical path' items." Urbanek says a new venture building NASCAR-branded tables was eating up his time, and complications made the Walmart project lengthier and more ex- pensive than he originally had anticipated. So he contacted Naples' Richard E. Stephenson II Construction Management to finish the job. Urbanek writes that a friend recommended Stephenson highly, calling him "a true crafts- man, and a very honest and ethical guy." "I went up there initially to do two or three days of work, which turned into 10 days in order to get them bailed out," says Richard Stephenson. He says Urbanek told him he had "enough of a relationship" with the Kellogg & Kimsey proj- ect manager to make sure Stephenson was

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