City of Bowie decides to buy street paving distributor truck

After receiving only one bid for chip and seal on 1.8 miles of street in Bowie, the city council opted to buy a new distributor truck, which will enable the street department to make the repairs much cheaper.

At last week’s budget workshop, City Manager Ricky Tow reviewed the sole contract repair bid, which was $177,466.94. There had been nine inquiries into the bid letting.

That amount broke out into $77,477 for materials and $94,851 for labor, plus an additional $5,168.94 for the required bonds.

During the discussion Councilor Wayne Bell, retired highway engineer, said he crunched the numbers in the bid and he did not feel they were correct. The bid was rejected by a unanimous vote.

Facing a massive need for street repairs, the council decided to purchase a new distributor truck, which lays down the liquid for the chip and seal.

The present truck is an early 1980s model. Public Works Director Raymon Johnson told the council its computer no longer works and it does not lay the liquid down evenly on the roadway.

Using Federal Emergency Management Administration rates the city staff calculated they could do the those repairs for less than the bidder. Total costs using the newer liquid product would be $69,302.09 and using the old liquid it would be $108,952.31.

However, those figures do not include the cost of a new truck, which is quoted at $159,160. The council voted to purchase the truck using funds in the present street budget based on the savings of using the newer, cooler material.

Read the full story in the mid-week News.