Thorpe digs into facts surrounding landfill pan/scraper

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is a memo sent from County Administrator Brad Thorpe to members of the Citrus County Commission to give more details about the recent sale of the landfill's pan/scraper.

Board Members:

Pursuant to the discussion which occurred at last night’s Board meeting (March 26, 2013), I will place on the agenda for April 9, under my agenda, the discussion of the pan/scraper and excavator purchase issue.

I have included in this email, my response which further explains the position of our staff. All backup information involving this issue will be included with the agenda item: 

In response to the recent articles concerning the purchase of the landfill excavator by Citrus County, I hope this information will provide additional details that were not included in the news stories related to the purchase of this equipment. 

* The purchase of the excavator is in the BOCC approved 2012/13 budget and Capital Improvement Program to replace the pan/scraper.

* The pan was purchased in 1995 for $389,703 and had more than 11,000 working hours, with nearly $400,000 in maintenance costs during that time period. 

* During the development of the current year budget, County staff recommended to the Board to replace the pan/scraper with an excavator. The rationale was that due to the life of the pan/scraper and the ongoing maintenance costs it would be more beneficial to purchase a new piece of equipment. 

* The landfill now uses a significantly thinner Alternative Daily Cover (ADC) and the pan is no longer crucial to move large amounts of dirt for this cover. The excavator is more versatile to the current operation of the landfill and about a third of the cost of a new pan/scraper. 

* To date, there has been no evidence or other proof that the value of the trade-in was unreasonable.

* It is not unreasonable to expect the trade-in equipment to be repaired and resold by RingPower. County Staff was not aware of or was not notified of the repair. RingPower assumed the risk and responsibility to do so. 

I hope this further clarifies some of the issues surrounding the purchase of this equipment.

Brad Thorpe,
County Administrator