St. Peters knows what it wants from its trash trucks: Thick steel.
Bids went out in January to replace a 13-year-old truck and the city received seven different bids from five vendors. Health and Environmental Services Manager Dave Kuppler requested the board approve Armor Equipment's $244,868 bid—a bid he called the the lowest qualifiying bid even though it was $4,868 over budget.
Alderman Jerry Hollingsworth, Ward 2, asked Kuppler why he wasn't recommending an alternate bid from Downing Sales and Services, Inc. that came in under budget at $235,250.
"How is one $9,000 more expensive and why is that better?" Hollingsworth asked about the two bids.
Kuppler said city has tried the model truck in the Downing bid, but has found the truck has a thinner metal. Kuppler said the thicker metal helps make sure the city gets all 13 years out of the truck.
"It has troubles withstanding the pressures and rusting," Kuppler said. "It's a 13-year-old vehicle when we replace it, and we've found that we get a shorter life expectancy if we don't get the thicker steel in the body that can withhold the pressures of the compaction."
Kuppler said one of the reasons the bid went over budget is the city is still trying to account for changing steel prices and federal mandates, like emission requirements, that are driving prices up.
The truck is a 2014 Mack LEV614 with a Heil 28 Yd. Python Eject.
The board will vote to approve the purchase of the truck at the May 9 meeting.