AURORA — The city should have little trouble keeping streets free of snow and ice in years to come after Council approved the purchases April 27 of three new 8-ton dump trucks and related snow/ice removal equipment for a total of about $526,000.

The three 2021 International cabs and chassis will be purchased from Rush Truck Center of Parma for $252,210, while the snow/ice removal packages will be purchased from Gledhill Road Machinery of Galion for $273,820.

The snow/ice package includes new bodies, plows, central hydraulics and salt spreaders with brine capabilities. Service Director Harry Stark said the city’s current fleet spreaders are more than 20 years old and must be replaced, with the option to apply brine.

Stark said the cost of the trucks and equipment are less than the state bid and funding will come from the general; street construction, maintenance and repair; and capital improvement funds.

Stark explained the city’s snow removal fleet is aging. "We used four or five trucks this winter, which was a mild one, but it would have been difficult to get by if it had been a severe winter," he said. "We have one truck out of service because of a failed engine, which would cost several thousand dollars to repair."

Finance Director Tim Clymer said the purchases will be financed over three years – 2021 to 2023 – through Huntington Leasing.

Meanwhile, Council also approved the purchase of a snow/ice package for a 1-ton dump truck from Henderson Products Inc. of Bucyrus at a cost of $50,696, which Stark said also is less than the state bid. Money will come from the capital improvement fund.

OTHER BUSINESS

Two other purchases and three service contracts were approved at the April 27 meeting, at which a handful of Council reps and department heads, plus the mayor, convened at Town Hall and the other Council reps and department heads were connected remotely.

The city will buy a Cues Flexitrax C550 camera system from MTECH Co. for $55,995 for use to inspect storm and sanitary sewer infrastructure. To house and store the camera system, the city will purchase a Ford transit van from Montrose Ford for $43,329. Money for both purchases comes from the sewer capital fund.

West Side Roofing of Brook Park will replace Fire Station 2’s roof for $30,895, Dura Mark Inc. of Aurora will perform road striping during 2020 for $79,813 – with the option to renew for years two and three – and Dynegy Energy Services East LLC will serve as electricity supplier for city buildings and properties from May 2020 to May 2023.

Council confirmed the mayor’s appointment of Jeff Austin to the planning commission through Dec. 31, 2022 and Brad Duguay to the architectural board of review through Dec. 31, 2023. Austin replaces Peter French Jr., who was sworn in April 27 as a Councilman-at-Large.

The city will enter into mutual aid agreements with several surrounding communities after Council’s approval. Law Director Dean DePiero said the city hasn’t updated its agreements for several years.

Council OK’d changes in compensation for part-time seasonal parks/field prep employees Josh Famageltto, Logan Kocianic, Dominick Sharotta and Caleb Tinsley. The employment of a handful of other seasonal field prep and sports monitors was put on hold in light of coronavirus uncertainties.

Mayor Ann Womer Benjamin said this year’s Memorial Day parade and ceremonies, usually conducted by the Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion posts, have been canceled, but the city may honor deceased veterans in some way.

In light of Clymer’s report that the city’s income tax revenue might be down $1 million this year because of coronavirus-related unemployment, the mayor said the city is looking to postpone some proposed projects and purchases.

"This COVID-19 situation presents serious challenges for the city, but our finance director’s great job managing our funds, plus our past financial practices, will allow us to weather the storm," Womer Benjamin said. "We are not looking to cut staff at this time."

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