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Divided commission awards truck bid

The commission was divided on the purchase of a new pickup for use by Code Enforcement/City Hall, and ultimately voted 3-1 with Pam Gosline having to vote as mayor pro tem to approve the purchase.
The item had been carried over from last month when the commission had been presented with a low bid, and a recommendation to accept it. In the memo, prior to the February meeting, the commission was told that Vernon Auto Group “had been given the opportunity to compete with this price and did not return a bid.” However, one commissioner objected on behalf of the auto dealer needing more time, and the item was tabled until March.
Community Development Director David Pilcher told the commission on Tuesday that the low bid from last month for a 2019 4-door Dodge Ram pickup was still $21,276 from Grapevine Dodge. But Pilcher said that city policy allows the commission to purchase locally if an item is within 5 percent. He said Vernon Auto Group was 3 percent higher at $21,978.
“Does Vernon Auto know they are $700 short?” Commissioner Justin Marsh asked.
Pilcher said, yes, that he was working with Chris Dunson and that was the price the dealer was offering the city.
“Didn’t care, did he?” Marsh asked.
Commissioner Don Aydelott then made a motion to purchase from Vernon Auto Group, saying it was worth it to support the local economy. It was seconded by Britt Ferguson. Aydelott and Ferguson voted in favor while Marsh opposed it.
Because Mayor Doug Jeffrey was not in attendance, Gosline was acting as mayor pro tem and ordinarily would not vote, however, the item needed three votes to pass, so she affirmed that she also voted in favor of it. And the purchase was awarded to Vernon Auto.
Gosline clarified that the truck was not just for code enforcement use, but for all of City Hall. As such it would be used when employees traveled out of town for training.

See the online edition for more from Tuesday’s meeting

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