County to purchase equipment

Published 4:00 am Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Pike County Commission approved the purchase of a motor grader, an asphalt grinder and a boom mower on Monday.

“We have the plans to sell the old motor grader and purchase a new one,” Pike County Engineer Russell Oliver told commissioners during Monday’s meeting.

Oliver said the best time to sell equipment is in the spring; however, the condition of the current motor grader is pushing the department to go ahead and purchase a new one.

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“From a financial standpoint, it won’t be a problem to go ahead and purchase it now and wait for the best time to sell the old one,” Oliver said.

The budget includes $50,000 for a down payment for the motor grader, as well as a $45,000 down payment on the boom mower. The asphalt grinder will be paid in full for more than $56,000.

“Whenever we sell the motor grader, we will probably try to sell some of our other equipment at the same time,” Oliver said.

Commissioner Homer Wright expressed his concern about the frequent repairs of the equipment.

“It’s either not being taken care of or they aren’t putting maintenance on it like they should,” Wright said. “We can’t say that everybody is doing the same thing.”

Oliver assured the commissioners that the repairs are necessary due to age of the equipment, not the lack of maintenance.

“We do spend a lot on repairs, but I assure you that our men do a great job,” Oliver said. “The equipment is just old, fatigued and worn out.”

The commission also honored Oliver’s request to fill a job vacancy in the engineering department.

Oliver also presented a public relations campaign to the commissioners, announcing that the engineering department will soon be taking part in the campaign.

The Association of County Commissions of Alabama (ACCA) is presenting the Drive Alabama campaign, and Oliver said that Pike County will be jumping on board.

“This is just a public awareness campaign to spread the word about the severe funding problem that we have on county roads,” Oliver said. “While we have been blessed with some really great projects from ATRIP – like the Elm Street project – The needs are still great. There is still a tremendous need for additional road funding for county roads for the state.”

In other news, the commissioners approved the reappraisal budget revision request for 2014-2015, awarded a bid for the RDS contract and the Lee County DYS contract.

Commissioners adjourned the meeting, entering an executive session to discuss pending litigation.

The next Pike County Commission meeting will be Monday, Nov. 9.