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Troup buys dump trucks, animal committee recommends no change

The Troup County Board of Commissioners approved the purchase of two new dump trucks for the road department at Tuesday’s meeting. The trucks will cost approximately $244,360.

In purchasing the trucks, commissioners accepted the recommendation of county staff, who were seeking one single axle truck and one tandem axle truck. Both trucks are 2022 Mack models.

County Engineer James Emery said in a presentation that the county’s dump truck fleet is “quite depleted.”

“Since our last purchase over 10 years ago … we’ve had multiple total-loss accidents, we’ve had an accident that involved the cab being destroyed on one of the dump trucks,” Emery said. “We also have dump trucks that have just become so old and in disrepair that repair costs exceed the value.”

The hauling needs of the county often exceed capacity, forcing the county to use hourly contract trucks. County Manager Eric Mosley said the county spends between $100,000 and $110,000 yearly to rent trucks.

The newest truck owned by the county is a 2007 model. Others are 2000 and 1995 models. 

The single axle truck cost about $93,800, while the tandem axle truck will be about $141,550.

Optional upgrades to the trucks add about $9,000 to their combined cost, bringing the total to $244,356.46

“We’re easily getting about double that value if you were to equip theses trucks with each of those options, itemized individually,” Emery said of the optional upgrades.

County Road Superintendent Kevin Kinnersley said the county has used Mack trucks in the past and considered them the best brand to go with.

“When you talk about the kind of work we do day-to-day, when we’re off-road a lot, there’s nothing that really compares to the components of how the Mack is set up for that kind of work,” Kinnersley said.

Commissioner Ellis Cadenhead asked if two tandem trucks would be more beneficial. Emery responded that if commissioners were willing to grant funds, they would be more beneficial.

The cost of the trucks will come out of the county’s capital fund.

“The road department has requested trucks year after year after year … Big ticket capital replacements were really difficult overall, for the county budget, and we’ve rocked along for a lot of years,” Emery said.

Cadenhead later made a motion to purchase two tandem trucks. No other commissioner seconded the motion, so the motion died.

A subsequent motion from Commissioner Morris Jones to purchase what staff recommended was seconded and passed unanimously.

The trucks should arrive in late spring.

Mosley also announced Tuesday that the Animal Advisory Committee had met for the last time and was recommending no changes to the county’s animal ordinance.

“I think they felt that they met the need at this point, and at that point, they signed off as their final meeting and have not met since,” Mosley said.

The committee was set up last summer to examine possible changes to the animal ordinance that governs people in unincorporated Troup County after animal activists petitioned commissioners. Instead of ruling on the matter, commissioners appointed an advisory committee of citizens to examine the ordinance.

In other business, the board approved two requests to lift the hiring freeze for two positions. Both positions are budgeted and are being vacated. One was from Sheriff James Woodruff to hire a records technician, the other from Parks and Recreation Director Lance Dennis to hire a West Point Administrative Secretary.

Commissioner Jones, who was reelected in November, was selected by the board to be vice chairman for 2021.