Miami-Dade Commission Votes to Contract Local Company for Baggage Wrap at Miami International Airport

The commission voted 11-1, overriding two vetoes from Mayor Carlos Gimenez.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The Miami-Dade County Commission has wrapped up debate over a baggage contract at Miami International Airport, voting 11-1 to award it to Safe Wrap over the the company that county staff had recommended. Mayor Carlos Gimenez, Safe Wrap President Radames Villalon and Commissioner Rebeca Sosa spoke about the issue.

    The Miami-Dade County Commission has wrapped up debate over a baggage contract at Miami International Airport.

    With an 11-1 vote, the commission voted to override two vetoes from Mayor Carlos Gimenez and award the contract to a local company, Safe Wrap, over the company county staff had recommended, True Star/Sinapsis, even though True Star had promised to pay 65 percent of its gross revenue while Safe Wrap had offered only 52 percent.

    "That difference could signify up to $6 million in revenue over the next several years," said Mayor Gimenez, explaining why he vetoed the commission's decision to award the concession to Safe Wrap. "Even though I knew that they were going to overturn it, I thought that I had to make a statement that it wasn't right."

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    Safe Wrap, a local luggage wrapping company, lost its contract to True Star Group, an overseas based company, in 2010. Former employee Reynaldo Diaz talks to Willard Shepard.

    Both firms had given the county the same minimum annual guaranteed payment of $9.6 million. Only Commissioner Xavier Suarez voted to uphold the vetoes. The rest of the commissioners said they simply could not trust True Star, which currently provides the baggage wrap service at the airport, because the company had already broken promises about revenue payments.

    "Also, the other company was promising a higher percentage, but based on increasing, doubling the cost to the customers," said Commissioner Rebeca Sosa.

    Safe Wrap has pledged not to increase the cost of wrapping luggage in plastic for the next ten years.

    True Star is suing the county, saying since it submitted the lowest bid, it was wrongfully denied the contract.

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