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Aliano Brothers General Contractors, Inc. v. Woolwich Township

A-5575-02T5 (N.J. Super. App. Div. 2004) (Unpublished)

PUBLIC BIDDING—When a publicly bid project is completed during the pendency of a suit over the bidding procedure, the suit is moot and a court will not decide the matter just because the issue presented is novel and possibly applicable to many other publicly bid projects.

A contractor brought suit because it had lost a public bidding for a project to another contractor who had submitted its bid late. The municipality awarded the contract to the late bidder because, “the four minutes that [the contractor] was late . . . was a waivable defect.” At first, the contractor bringing the suit was able to secure temporary restraints pending a hearing. At the hearing, the restraints were dissolved and the case was dismissed.

On appeal, the Appellate Division dismissed the case as moot because the project had been substantially completed while the suit was pending. Although the contractor conceded that the issue was moot, it asked that the Court decide the matter because it felt that the issue was novel and had the potential to arise on every public bid open in the state. The Court disagreed, and stated that each case involving the waiver of defects in the public bidding process must be decided on its own facts.

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