Though Monday night’s agenda was short, several impactful decisions were made during the city commission meeting.
City leaders and members of the public tuned in from their homes Monday evening to the second-ever virtual commission meeting in Plant City.
Though the agenda was brief, the sentiment was clear: Plant City is still moving full steam ahead.
One of the big wins for the city this week was an approved purchase of five enclosed trailer mounted generators at a massive discount. These generators provide auxiliary power for the City of Plant City’s sewage lift and well stations. Eight of the trailer-generators for the Utilities Maintenance Department had exceeded their life expectancy and were in need of replacement. The 2019-20 fiscal year’s budget allotted for five of those to be be replaced.
While all went according to plan, the final savings amount was far more than anyone expected. Commissioner Bill Dodson had the item removed from the consent agenda to further delve into the specifics of the purchase because while he said he was “really thankful we are able to do so well,” he was curious as to exactly how that was pulled off. City Manager Bill McDaniel explained staff did extensive research and was able to piggyback off an existing contact.
“When we establish budgets, things are based upon retail pricing,” McDaniel said. Using our procurement department, we were able to buy the generators under a state contract… because those are state wide contracts, the municipalities and counties and other governmental entities for the state basically get the benefits of that combined buying power.”
The total cost for the five generators had been expected to be $401,788, but with the Florida Sheriff’s Association Contract with Tradewinds Power Corp. of Sebring Florida the total ended up coming in at $267,957. The funds are available in the Fleet Replacement Fund.
Commissioners also agreed to extend a contract for consultant work with Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc. The city began efforts to recruit candidates to fill two management positions within the Engineering Department in early December 2019. In order to help the department maintain its programing duties and necessary assignments, the city partnered with Kimley-Horn for consultant work with a contract in the amount of $35,880.00.
“The initial estimated term of the required services was 13 weeks,” the city report said. “The first modification to this contract was requested and approved on March 9, 2020, adding an additional 8 week term in the amount of $22,080.00.”
While the City Engineer position was filled on March 30, the Assistant City Engineer job is still vacant. Commissiones agreed to extend the contract with Kimley-Horn for another 13 weeks so the consultant engineer can “transition projects he is currently managing over to the City Engineer and provide time for the City Engineer to orient himself with City operations.”
This second extension will cost the city $35,880 and the funds will be transferred from engineering salaries.
The City of Plant City also agreed to vacate a portion of Henderson Way following a public hearing Monday evening. The city was asked to abandon a portion of the cul-de-sac located at the east end of Henderson Way. This area isn’t needed because the right of way — Henderson Way — is proposed to be extended eastward by the applicant.
The Planning Board unanimously approved the decision on Dec. 11 and forwarded it on to commissioners, who also unanimously agreed with the plan this week.