Opens bids

Floyd County Judge-Executive Robbie Williams, center, opens bids for road repairs on Tinker Fork and Plumber’s Fork during a special meeting Tuesday.

The Floyd County Fiscal Court spent more than $352,000 during a special meeting on Tuesday, agreeing to make road repairs and buy equipment and vehicles. 

The fiscal court approved about $67,000 in bills and $146,700 to buy two Caterpillar excavators from Wayne Supply, a company whose bid was approved by the state through its master agreement procurement process. Officials report that the sale of surplus items will offset the cost of the excavator purchases. The fiscal court previously voted to compile a list of surplus items to sale. 

Members also approved bids totaling about $39,000 from Nattco and $52,000 from Nova for road work on Plumbers Fork and Tinker Fork. County officials believe these costs will be reimbursed at a later date by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The work concerns repairs in the roads caused by previous flood damage. 

The county sought bids on this work to get these roads repaired prior to the start of the next school year on Aug. 7, with officials saying school buses cannot travel them. 

On July 30, Judge-Executive Robbie Williams talked about the need to add a requirement to the bid awards, so that the road repairs will be required to start within 10 days or, he said, the county would select another company to do the work. 

Bids submitted for the Plumber’s Fork project ranged from about $52,000 to about $63,000. Bids for the Tinker Fork project ranged from about $39,000 to about $59,000.

During the meeting, the fiscal court also voted to spend $47,500 to buy two vehicles without seeking bids for the purchases. The vehicles will be used to deliver meals through the Floyd County Senior Citizens Center programs, officials said. 

Members voted to give Williams authority to sign all documents pertaining to a $24,275 grant “toward the purchase of two new vehicles.” The resolution also authorized a $47,510 check to be issued to buy the vehicles at Pop’s Chevrolet. 

Williams said the fiscal court will only pay $6,900 for the vehicles. Treasurer David Layne said the county’s senior citizens program will pay around $15,000 for them.   

The resolution notes that Williams “has entertained bids” from Pop’s Chevrolet for two 2020 Chevy Equinox vehicles at a price of $23,755 each, or a total of $47,510. 

After the meeting, Williams confirmed the county did not seek bids to buy them. He said Pop’s Chevrolet offered the state bid price for the vehicles. 

Tim Short’s bid on the state’s master list offers two prices for 2018 Equinox purchases. One is $19,875 and the other is $21,535, which are each slightly less than the $23,755 paid by the fiscal court. No 2020 vehicles are listed on the state’s master list, however. 

At this meeting, the fiscal court approved the second reading of an ordinance that raises its minimum threshold for purchases that require bidding to $30,000, in compliance with state law. 

Local governments can purchase high-dollar items without bidding, however, if the purchase is from companies that secured master agreements with the state because the state has already went through the bidding process on those items. 

State law also allows local governments to buy items through noncompetitive negotiation “only when a written determination is made that competition is not feasible and it is further determined in writing by a designee of a local public agency” that there’s an emergency or that, among other things, there’s a single source in a “reasonable geographical area” of the product to be purchased or contracted. 

Layne said he believes the county did not need to seek competitive bids for the purchases because he said they are “state bid price.” 

“Nobody’s ever told us that we couldn’t do that,” Layne said. “If you could buy a vehicle locally for state bid price contract, that’s always been the norm since I’ve been treasurer.”

He said the agency that is supplying the grant approved of the purchases. 

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