County prefers working with county businesses
Leavenworth County commissioners want to keep their business in the county, but they won't do it at an undue expense to taxpayers, they indicated Monday.
Sheriff Dave Zoellner approached commissioners at their meeting Monday with news that his department was eligible to participate in a program that would allow it to purchase patrol cars through a program at the same prices quoted to the federal government's General Services Administration. Those prices generally are thought to be the lowest available because of the buying power of the federal government.
Zoellner, who was seeking direction from commissioners, reiterated that he favored buying locally. But the same 2007 model Crown Victoria outfitted with a police package the department bought last year locally for $20,860 was listed for $20,043 through the GSA program.
With 10 cars to purchase this year, the savings could be high.
"Do you still want me to go out for bids or join the partnership program?" Zoellner asked.
Commissioners restated their position that it's best to purchase locally when those bidders' prices are reasonably close to the low bid.
Commissioner Clyde Graeber reminded Zoellner that such after-the-purchase perks, such as quick servicing by an in-county dealer don't come with a GSA purchase.
"And that Ford place out there on the highway pays a beaucoup amount of property taxes to the county," Graeber said.
In the end, commissioners agreed Zoellner should solicit bids from area dealers, including several out-of-county for squad cars and let the potential bidders know the county reserved the right to refuse the bids in favor of one with GSA pricing.