Arnold cut off government vehicle rebate | Local news


Arnold’s director of public works Judy Wagner hopes five pickup trucks in the city’s fleet will last at least a year longer.

The town of Arnold wants to replace the trucks used by the public works and stormwater departments, but they are struggling to find a purchase due to the longer-than-normal wait times for orders to be filled and Ford suspends its government rebate program.

Wagner said Ford informed Enterprise, which Arnold uses to lease vehicles, on Nov. 4, that the company had stopped offering government discounts for vehicles for at least a year.

She said she planned to ask city council members to approve the purchase of four pickup trucks through the rebate program the day she learned the program had been suspended.

So city officials and Enterprise worked together to try to strike a deal with Bommarito Ford to order pickups from the dealership, who said he would try to acquire the vehicles at a discount and charge Arnold $ 500. for each order.

Even with that deal in place, Wagner said the pickups likely won’t be available for at least 28 weeks or more.

However, Wagner said Ford stopped offering the dealership discount on November 23, five days after board members agreed to pay $ 160,546 for four pickup trucks to replace five pickup trucks the city wants to decommission. .

The city wants to buy a 2022 Ford F-250, 2022 Ford F-350 chassis, 2022 Ford F-350 chassis, and 2022 Ford F-450 chassis, and without the government rebate, the price charged for all four trucks would be $ 192,923 and the manufacturer’s suggested retail price is said to be $ 201,595, according to city documents.

Wagner said the city wanted to replace a 2000 Ford F-350, which has about 70,000 miles and is used by the Street Department to transport tools; a 2011 Ford F-150, which has 93,000 miles and would be traded in for a Ford F-250 which can be used to help clear the streets after snowfall; a 2005 Ford F-450 with about 89,000 miles that Arnold wants to replace with an F-450 chassis with a snow-clearing spreader and a dumpster that will also replace a pickup that has a rusty dumpster; and a 2010 Ford F-350 with 130,000 miles that the city wants to replace with a pickup that runs on gas instead of diesel fuel.

Unfortunately, the city will have to wait to get the vehicles it needs, Wagner said.

“For now, we’re going to limp along with them,” she said. “Knowing that there is nothing new to come when an expensive fix comes along, we’ll probably say it’s worth fixing as we won’t have a new one.”

If one of the existing trucks breaks down and cannot be repaired, the city will likely have two options to replace it, buy one at auction or buy one directly from a dealer at market value, the city said. city ​​administrator Bryan Richison.

“There aren’t a lot of options,” he said. “With an auction, you don’t know what the cost will be until it’s over, so there should be a maximum amount. If we can find one through a reseller, we could buy it normally with a quote and approve it that way.

Richison said the city, like other municipalities, is in this position because the COVID-19 pandemic has slowed supply chains across the country.

“I’ve never seen a situation where you couldn’t get a vehicle like this,” he said.

Bucket truck

Arnold agreed to buy a truck that the city needs.

City council members voted unanimously on Nov. 18 to purchase the truck for $ 117,041.

Wagner said Arnold may not receive the truck until 2023.

She said Arnold also asked to receive a bucket truck from Ameren, who donates trucks he replaces in its fleet. However, she said the city was one of 38 candidates, and it is not known if or when Ameren will make trucks available to the cities.

“I don’t know if I would do it for them,” she said.

Wagner said the city is currently leasing a bucket truck from Gerstner Electric in Fenton. The rental costs Arnold $ 120 an hour and includes a truck and operator.

She said Arnold typically had to use a bucket truck about 30 times a year for various tasks, like hanging Christmas lights or flags.

“The good thing is we don’t have to maintain the truck,” Wagner said.

However, she said the rental fee cost Arnold more in the long run than buying his own bucket truck.

“When you buy a bucket truck, it can last 20 years if you maintain it,” Wagner said. “We can make it last. “

At the current rental rate, Arnold would pay approximately $ 288,000 to lease the truck from Gerstner Electric over a 20-year period.

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