Costly dump truck for Spaniard’s Bay
Rebound in U.S. economy having negative effect on major purchases in small-town Newfoundland
Spaniard’s Bay town council agreed at its latest meeting to purchase a new dump truck.
Purchasing a new truck for the new year may cost the Town of Spaniard’s Bay nearly a quarter of a million dollars.
After putting out a tender earlier this year to purchase a new single-axle dump truck, Spaniard’s Bay town council finds themselves with only one bid – one that will take $238,820 out of the town’s bank account.
During a regular meeting of council held Monday, Nov. 26, town manager Tony Ryan explained the tender closed 10 days prior on Friday, Nov. 16.
A bid from Harvey and Company–a truck dealer in St. John’s—was the only one the town received.
After reviewing the bid Ryan told council he felt as though all was in order, with the only issue being the timeline for delivery.
Originally, the town requested a delivery time of 180 days. However, the estimated delivery time for the vehicle, which is a special order from the United States, will be somewhere between 250 and 300 days.
After speaking with people in the industry, Ryan stated to council that a rebound in the U.S economy has led to a significant increase in the truck’s cost as well, and that delivery times for trucks like this are not as quick as they were years ago when the town last bought a dump truck.
“It seems like heavy duty trucks and things like that, has gone from a usual delivery of, say, five-months, up to a now nine to 10 months, possibly even more,” he said during the meeting.
As for the price of the vehicle, that too has increased significantly since the last time council purchased a truck of this type.
In 2005, when council bought the truck it currently uses, the Canadian dollar was on par with the U.S. dollar.
Now the Canadian dollar is worth about 75 cents against the US dollar, meaning anything bought from a U.S. supplier is more expensive.
The town manager noted the life expectancy for trucks of this type is in the range of 15-20 years.
The truck currently in use by the town has been around for 13-years, meaning it’s soon approaching the possible end of its life cycle.
Therefore, the town considered it urgent to ensure a truck is ready to roll in the town before the current truck is no longer useable.
Coun. Eric Jewer also noted the route the town’s dump truck makes a 100-kilometre trek daily, sometimes twice a day, depending on how much snowfall the town sees in the run of a day.
“Our current truck is costing more and more in maintenance all the time, so if we don’t do this soon we run the chance of not having a truck ready to go for next winter,” added Coun. David Smith.
Although the decision came with some hesitation, councillors decided unanimously to adopt the motion to award the tender to Harvey and Company for the truck.
Bay Roberts town manager Tony Ryan