Costly dump truck for Spa­niard’s Bay

Re­bound in U.S. econ­omy hav­ing neg­a­tive ef­fect on ma­jor pur­chases in small-town New­found­land

The Compass - - Front page - BY CHRIS LEWIS [email protected]­n­com­pass.ca

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.

FILE PHOTO

Bay Roberts town man­ager Tony Ryan

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