Mayor gains approval to sell dump truck, proceeds to reimburse street reserve fund

By: 
Roxie Murphy
Staff Writer

BLAND — City Mayor Ron Shafferkoetter informed aldermen Dec. 10 that the dump truck they purchased in June needed to go.

“It has nothing to do with what you could or could not do with it,” Shafferkoetter told the board. “On the record, when this came up, Rachel (Anderson) was the treasurer and she informed the board of aldermen that they didn’t have the money to buy the truck. So they said ‘take it out of reserves.’”

Shafferkoetter said Anderson informed the board that the money they would be taking out of reserves was for a program Shafferkoetter started in 2014 to help the city apply for grants. The treasurer was applying a sum into the street fund, along with other unused funds, to help save for a match for a grant.

“We had accumulated $122,000,” Shafferkoetter said. “My initial idea was to accumulate $222,000 and do some streets.”

Shafferkoetter said when the previous board pulled $15,000 from the street reserve fund, it had to be paid back, and they set it up on a five-year payback program. But in order to pay back the funds, the board was using the amount they were already putting into reserve, so the fund was not growing.

“They (the previous board) disregarded the advise of the treasurer; which in the five years I was mayor, I never went against my treasurer,” Shafferkoetter said. “When they show me I can’t afford it, I back off. I want to sell that truck. It will go out for bids, and put that money back into the street reserve.”

Shafferkoetter said he spoke with Meramec Regional Planning Commission (MRPC) to start the process for a grant for the streets and the city of Bland will need all the funds they have in the street fund for the program.

“That is the main reason I think we need to sell the truck,” Shafferkoetter said. “The second reason, I have been told, that the truck was purchased with the idea we could pave streets. It’s going to be about two years from the time they bought that truck until they could do any paving because the streets are going to get tore up for the new water lines that are going to be installed. So the truck sits there.”

Shafferkoetter said he also questions the size of the truck, as far as navigating the narrow streets; and if the truck violates city weight limit ordinance.

“So without getting into all the little reasons, the main reason is I would have never approved of buying this truck because, number one, you didn’t have to have it. And that is the only time you should take money out of reserves, is if you have to. That’s what it’s put there for. Catastrophic purposes,” Shafferkoetter said. “To give the city some kind of security in case things go bad.”

He added that it is very important the city has reserves and it should not be spent without due diligence.

Alderman Sherry Spradling asked what the current weight restrictions were. Shafferkoetter said he would have to look it up exactly.

“But I am not sure with that truck loaded, 36,000 pounds, plus the weight of the truck, (it) would be legal on our streets,” Shafferkoetter said. “You load that up with 18 ton of hot asphalt with the intention of paving streets.”

Shafferkoetter said the truck is currently costing the city money to insure and make payments on. Shafferkoetter asked for a motion on the truck. Spraddling said she would make a motion to sell the 2004 sterling tandem dump truck model LT7500 along with a 10-foot snow plow attachment, stainless steel material spreader attachment, and any other truck equipment associated with the truck.

Motion passed with a 3-0 vote. Alderman Tommy Thompson was absent. Shafferkoetter said he wanted the truck listed for sale online as well.