Council weighs in on garbage truck options

 By Kay Braddock

        Discussions regarding the condition of the town’s current garbage truck have been addressed at recent Terry Town Council meetings, including last week’s regular meeting. As the truck’s condition continues to worsen, the council is once again preparing to tackle the issue during a special meeting Wed., Jan. 20 at 6:30 p.m.

  The 1999 Volvo garbage truck with a Heil truck bed had a portion of its slide welded last week, according to town maintenance supervisor Art Tyler. It is feared that further cracking along the slide will prevent the compacting unit from working at all. 
Although the town has another older garbage truck, used for picking up grass clippings and tree limbs, Tyler noted that the 1999 Volvo garbage truck is the only one that meets Montana Department of Transportation code to travel on the Interstate. It’s also the only one that can maintain the needed capacity, according to Tyler.
Terry garbage is hauled to a landfill in Dawson County.
The need to replace the truck doesn’t come as a surprise to the council, according to Terry mayor Ron Kiosse, noting the town began a reserve to replace the truck about five years ago. The typical lifespan of a garbage truck is about ten years, according to Kiosse, before replacements or major repairs are generally required. 
The town’s options include replacing the compact unit on the current 1999 Volvo truck, purchase a new garbage truck or do both, according to Kiosse.
“We would consider a demo (garbage truck) because of the cost,” Kiosse said, noting a demo garbage truck was located costing about $143,000.
A new garbage truck could cost up to $180,000, according to Kiosse. Repairing the current truck will likely cost between $20-30,000.
“We don’t have a bid yet,” Kiosse explained on the repair job, but noted a repair shop in Glendive has looked at the truck.
Currently the town has about $180,000 in the garbage truck reserve, according to town clerk Caryn Rein. 

Published Jan. 20, 2010

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