by Jonathan Weaver
If snow returns to North Buffalo Township, township maintenance crews will have at least two new pieces of equipment to keep residents and motorists safe.
At last night’s monthly supervisors meeting, Roadmaster Clark Whiteman announced two trucks had been purchased earlier this month: including a 1995 International 4500 plow truck.
After inspection by the Township Supervisors David Wolfe, Paul Kirkwood and Whiteman – as well as a township employee – and negotiation, the plow truck was purchased for $6,500. It replaces a 1994 tandem plow truck with hydraulic problems.
“The `94, we can’t find a pump for anywhere in the United States. We can’t find parts for it – that’s why we’re replacing it,” Whiteman said. “It’s obsolete – so at what point do you stop throwing money at stuff you can’t find parts for?”
Whiteman estimated the pump broke about five weeks ago – only leaving the township with five plow trucks.
“We have 33 miles of road to take care of,” Whiteman said. “We (even) have a plow for on our grader if we need to.”
Supervisors also purchased a 2004 GMC 4200 bucket truck for $9,800 to upgrade its current 1998 model.
The bucket truck has still be in-use, “to some degree,” Whiteman said.
Whiteman called both purchased “cost-effective.”
Last month, Whiteman emphasized the need to upgrade equipment as well.
“The sooner the better,” Whiteman said.
After the used equipment is possibly sold, supervisors are considering purchasing a storage shed to serve as both a police impound lot and to store equipment and material – such as rock, salt and anti-skid.
If a suitable option is found, supervisors also are considering the purchase of a new grader to replace a grader that is nearly 50 years old.
“We’re looking at equipment, but it just depends. If something comes along that’s decent, we’ll consider it,” Whiteman concluded.
In the mean time, supervisors will take advantage of the favorable weather to survey all township roads next week to consider summer road projects.
Through the purchases and balloon payments, supervisors are trying to reduce debt while at the same time saving money to potentially buy equipment again next year.