By JIMMY LAWTON
OGDENSBURG – The city approved purchasing a used 10-ton paving roller for $40,000 following a lengthy discussion Tuesday.
Ogdensburg Department of Public Works Director Scott Thornhill said the 2006 vibratory asphalt compactor would be purchased from Vantage Equipment LLC, Syracuse. He said he expected the roller to last between 7 and 10 years and added that it could be purchased using Consolidated Highway Improvement Program funding, which was increased this year by the state.
City comptroller Phillip Cosmo added that typical the city gets more use out of its equipment than is estimated due to the care and maintenance of the DPW.
Council William Hosmer questioned whether buying a used piece of equipment would be more cost effective than purchasing new. Thornhill has he and former interim DPW director Gregg Harland agreed that it was.
Thornhill said a new machine would cost at least $100,000, but could cost $200,000 or even $300,000 if customized for city use. The city’s current roller, which is out of commission, was purchased new and lasted approximately 20 years, according to estimates from city council.
Hosmer and councilor Michael Morley questioned what leasing a roller would cost the city.
Thornhill noted that he did not have exact figures in front of him but estimated that renting it might be in the range of $5,000 for the season. He said more Harland compiled accurate figures, but he did not have them at the meeting.
Hosmer asked if it was cost effective to purchase the used roller, when the city might be able to rent or buy a new one for a similar price, when factoring the cost over time.
Morely agreed that there may be potential savings.
Mayor William Nelson pointed out that the city currently doesn’t have a full size roller and time was a factor.
Thornhill informed the council that CHIPs funding could not be used on a lease.
After some discussion the council agreed to trust the DPW’s recommendation.
Councilor Jennifer Stevenson said that streets were in terrible condition. She asked if spending $40,000 on a roller would limit the amount of streets that could be paved.
“The streets are in terrible shape,” she said.
Thornhill said material costs were “favorable” and he and Harland believed the city should be able to purchase the machine and complete the necessary paving due to the increase in CHIPs funding.
Despite some reservations councilors agreed to purchase the roller to ensure paving would not be delayed.