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Solid waste district purchasing equipment, targeting efficiency

Jul 30, 2014 - By Eric Blom, Staff Writer

The Fremont County Solid Waste Disposal District is moving forward with purchasing several pieces of heavy equipment, some of which is part of a plan to increase efficiency.

At its July 22 meeting, the district's board of directors accepted a $406,000 bid for a Caterpillar waste compactor from Wyoming Machinery. The district received two other bids, one of which was lower than Wyoming Machinery's, but the winning bid was the only one meeting all of the bid specifications, solid waste superintendent Andy Frey said.

"The waste compactor is our backbone right now, and we need redundancy with equipment," he said. "The machine we do have is an '01. It's a good machine, but it would serve better as a backup."

District lawyer Rick Sollars clarified that the board did not have to accept the lowest bid if it did not meet all requirements.

Compacting waste is one of the changes the district board adopted earlier this year to make the countywide operation more efficient. The district had been baling waste and placing the compacted bundles into landfills.

The district believes dumping trash loose in the landfill and squeezing it down with a heavy trash compactor would allow it to achieve a greater density of waste in its landfills, allowing it to put more trash in the same space.

One specification the two losing bids did not contain was a seven-year warranty, according to a report from Frey. Wyoming Machinery's offer included a seven-year warranty, while the others included six-year warranties.

The board also approved going to bid on a semi tractor and a walking-floor trailer. Solid Waste's budget for the year already includes the purchases at $140,000 for the tractor and $75,000 for the trailer.

A walking-floor trailer can carry between 20 tons and 22 tons of waste and has a floor built in to move the material.

"They create a redundancy with equipment we need," Frey said about the planned purchases.

The district has three semi tractors that are road-worthy, Frey said, and two are constantly in use. The third often is as well. He said they often tow walking-floor trailers.

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