Holton commission takes higher bid for park mowers
The Holton City Commission recently discussed two bids for the purchase of two lawnmowers for the city’s parks and recreation department, but opted on a split vote to go with a total bid that was about $2,000 more than the low bid.
The vote to do so came after one of the commissioners said that doing so could have more of a benefit to the city, since the high bidder’s business is located within the city limits, pays city property taxes and collects city sales taxes.
During their Monday, March 7 meeting, commissioners reviewed bids from Tarwater Farm and Home Supply and Sam’s Equipment Service and Sales, both businesses with Holton addresses, for the purchase of two mowers to replace three older Grasshopper mowers owned by the parks and recreation department. The older mowers were being traded in as part of the bids.
Sam’s Equipment had the lower bid of $30,540 for two new Hustler mowers, with the total bid cut to $16,540 after a $14,000 trade-in for the three older Grasshopper mowers.
Tarwater’s bid for two new Grasshopper mowers was $33,945.50, but with a $15,500 trade-in on the older mowers, the final bid came to $18,445.50 — a difference of $1,905.50.
Holton City Manager Kerwin McKee’s recommendation was to go with the bid from Sam’s Equipment, but commissioners ended up voting 4-1 — with commissioner Marilyn Watkins opposed — to accept Tarwater’s bid.
That action came after commissioner Tim Morris said he would prefer to go with Tarwater’s bid because the company, unlike Sam’s Equipment, was located within Holton’s corporate city limits, collects city sales taxes and pays property taxes to the city, and the city should “patronize the local businesses” that do pay city taxes.
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