I really don't think there is any preference or under the table dealings in this bid. I say that from watching and participating in the bid 3 times over the last 6 years. What I see is a new group of bidders every two years, who have no experience with low income housing work and don't take into account all of the minor irritants, like 5-6-7 flat tires per day, 6-7 man hours per day picking up trash, residents who won't move so you can mow thru, causing you to have to return to areas, gangs of kids in the summer who think the greatest thing in the world is to stand and stare at you while you try and mow and not hit them with dust and grass, multiple insurance claims for broken car windows and scratched paint jobs, none of which are your fault, but they know they can call the housing office and get your insurance carrier and when you get home you have a message from the claims office wanting details, lots of little things like that.
Was mowing one of the projects last Wednesday, stopped to pick up a broken concrete block that was laying in the grass. Started mowing and saw a piece of rock go skipping thru the grass in front of me and thought it was strange, hadn't heard the blades hit anything. Looked behind me and saw a 15-16 years old standing there grinning. Came back around, when i was heading away from him again saw a rock come by my head, missed me by about 1 foot. Looked back, kid standing there grinning like crazy. Pulled out my cell phone, held it up and started dialing, he and two buddies took off running. Its nothgin to have a resident see you coming toward them and have them pick up a trash can and dump it right in front of you in the grass, just so they can watch yo pick it up. That is why my bid was 95xxx and not too high. And the contract gives them the right to reject any bid for any reason, not bound to take low bid.