The Dubois County Council met Monday for their regular meeting and heard requests from the Dubois County Highway Department for over $400,000.00 in equipment needed to maintain and repair roads in the county.
County Highway Superintendent Steve Berg asked for 3 single axle dump trucks with dump beds and lift kits, along with 6 salt and sand spreaders that can be used with those and other trucks in the department.
The price tag for the purchases is around $240,000.00.
Council member Mark Brescher expressed concerns about ordering snow equipment when getting ready to go into the Spring saying that constituents would question why those purchases are made now instead of waiting until later in the year.
Berg told the council that he was told it takes about six months from the date of ordering to when the equipment is delivered. He said he would look closer into the lead times that it will take to get the equipment.
The Council voted to give Berg the go ahead to advertise for the package.
Then, Berg dropped a big ticket item on the council: a new excavator, saying that the current one they have is a 2000 Hyundai and is starting to show some drive train problems and other issues related to wear. The cost: around $200,000.00.
The Department has a total of four, but only one needs to be replaced.
The council asked if Berg could possibly hold off on this purchase, and Council member Shane Lindauer asked if it would be possible to find a good used unit at a substantial savings, versus buying a brand new one.
Berg said he would look into that possibility.
Finally, Berg and County Commissioners in attendance, Larry Volmer, Randy Fleck and Doug Uebelhor brought up the fact that the Highway department is running out of space at its current location at the corner of SR 162 and Schnellville Road.
They discussed the purchase of land adjacent to their location and the difficulties in getting landowners to sell to them.
Berg said it would be something they would have to address in the future to have enough room to operate the department efficiently.