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County accepts higher bid for salt spreader
County accepts higher bid for salt spreader

Presiding Commissioner Bill Ransdall works the phones trying to replace a salt spreaders prior to an expected Monday storm.
PULASKI COUNTY, Mo. (Dec. 12, 2008) — Faced with a critical need to replace a broken salt spreader, county commissioners decided Thursday to pay $7,825 to Bus Andrews Truck Equipment of Springfield rather than to the low bidder, GM Supply Company of Columbia, which offered a $7,220 bid.

A third bidder was Knapheide Trucking Equipment Central of Jefferson City, which offered an $8,405 bid.

Pulaski County Presiding Commissioner Bill Ransdall called the companies asking when they’d be able to deliver the equipment but found they didn’t have a salt spreader in stock.

“How quick can we get one? It’s supposed to snow Monday,” Ransdall said to a company representative who said it would take a minimum of 30 days to provide the equipment once it’s ordered.

“That may make a difference on what we do here. Can you call me back?” Ransdall asked.

Ransdall’s frustration increased as he called more companies.

“Somebody ought to give them a lesson in Economics 101 in customer service,” Ransdall said to his fellow commissioners as he prepared to get on the phone with another company.

“If you called them and told them you had a commission that was willing to buy today if they could ship today, what would happen?” Ransdall asked a sales representative. “You are not the cheapest but we’re trying to do business with you.”

Ransdall finally was able to arrange for Bus Andrews Truck Equipment to send what he believed would be the best available equipment for the job. The bid also called for heavier-weight steel that’s less likely to cause problems.

“Stainless steel is prone to crack if it’s not fixed right,” Ransdall said. “I’ve got him down that we will purchase one if he can ship it before Christmas.”

Faced with the likelihood that nobody can provide a salt spreader before Monday’s expected storms, Commissioner Bill Farnham finally moved that the commissioners buy the Bus Andrews Truck Equipment salt spreader with the thicker steel, and the commissioners unanimously agreed.

“We’ve got to get one bought,” Farnham said.

In other business:

• Farnham and Ransdall reported that a cooperative plan with the Missouri Department of Conservation to place road rock on a flood-damaged river access has been successful.

“It was good for the department because it made it aesthetically pleasing and good for the county because we didn’t have to just dump and dump rock until we got it filled,” Ransdall said.

• Commissioners received a road maintenance request for Sterling Road from a resident who said his road has become mostly mud and needs more road rock.

• Commissioners asked their road supervisors, Randy Walters and Stan Crismon, to try using a diesel additive for their pickups from Fuel Freedom International of Altamonte Springs, Fla., that might improve mileage.

“This little vial will treat 120 gallons of diesel fuel,” said Commissioner Dennis Thornsberry. “What I’d suggest is that both of you in the trucks that you are driving, be sure you’ve put 30 gallons of fuel in … See if it improves the efficiency of your vehicle and see what you think of it.”

• Missouri Department of Transportation representatives sent a letter to the county commissioners informing them that Pulaski County received MoDOT’s top rating for county bridge signs because all 12 of the 34 county-maintained bridges that require speed and weight postings are posted correctly.

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