Douglas County OKs purchase of 2 new ambulances

photo by: Journal-World File Photo

In this photo from Monday, Oct. 27, 2014, members of a Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical crew load a cyclist into an ambulance.

Douglas County commissioners agreed Wednesday to replace two ambulances for Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical at a cost of $556,638.

Fire Chief Mark Bradford said the purchases were part of an ongoing effort by the department to replace vehicles on an eight-to-10 year cycle, before they start requiring expensive maintenance or risk breaking down during emergency incidents.

Commissioners voted to waive the county’s formal bidding process and buy the vehicles through a cooperative purchasing program called the Houston-Galveston Area Council, which the county has used for the past 12 years. That program is administered through the Mid-America Regional Council in Kansas City, Mo.

The total purchase cost includes a $1,000 fee for taking part in the purchasing program.

The cost of the vehicles will also be partially offset by $22,500 that the county will receive by trading in the two ambulances being replaced.

Funding will come from the county’s Ambulance Equipment Reserve fund, which Bradford said had sufficient balances for the purchases.

Commissioners Michelle Derusseau and Mike Gaughan voted to approve the purchase. Commissioner Nancy Thellman was absent.

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