The Fayette County Commissioners passed a resolution recently authorizing the county engineer, Steve Luebbe, to proceed with the emergency purchase of an excavator.
The motion was made by commissioner Jack DeWeese and seconded by commissioner Dan Dean to waive the competitive bid requirement, as requested by Luebbe, and to authorize the emergency purchase of a 2002 Gradall XL3100 Highway Speed Wheeled Excavator Slope Grader from a dealer in Texas. The motion was unanimously passed, but, according to Luebbe, the deal was unable to be made.
“Well, the purchase fell through, it’s not going to happen now unfortunately,” Luebbe said during an interview Monday. “This is a very special piece of excavation equipment that articulates like other excavators do not. This kind of equipment is the backbone of our ditching. Right now, we have one that is really old and worn out. We are trying to replace it, and new ones are about a quarter of a million dollars and we aren’t going to buy a new one. We just can’t afford that.”
Luebbe explained that they had located one in Texas that was in “really good shape for a really good price,” that was a little over $50,000. Due to current legislation, if the price of a piece of equipment is above $50,000 it is required to receive authorization, under emergency measures, to spend the money. In this situation, Luebbe said the emergency was the sudden finding and need to move on the deal for a piece of equipment that is otherwise unable to be obtained.
“The guy in Texas ended up selling it out from underneath us,” Luebbe said. “We were in the process of getting the check cut and he sold it….he took a cash offer. That hurts, but we will keep looking for the best deal we can find. We can’t afford a new one, but we also don’t want to buy a used one that is in terrible shape. That isn’t a smart move.”
Luebbe also gave an update on the current projects being completed in the county. The rain has continued to keep culvert replacements a little behind, which he said is frustrating, but overall he said the projects are to be completed this year as expected. Luebbe also said that the $427,000 Baldwin Road Bridge Project, which was 95 percent federally-funded was completed late last month. DGM Construction, of Pike County, completed the job.
“DGM is a good contractor and we have worked with them in the past on many projects,” Luebbe said. “They worked hard beginning on March 1 and dodged the rain drops to get completed in less than two months. We will have a bridge inspection there sometime in the next couple of weeks.”
The commissioners also approved a participation agreement with the Fayette County Department of Job and Family Services and the Ohio CSEA Directors’ Association. The agreement provides location services for non-custodial parents through public records data to be performed by West Publishing Corporation.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy