Township considering purchase of new truck

ALPENA – The Alpena Township Board of Trustees looked into the purchase of a new demonstration fire truck at the request of township fire department Capts. Kenneth Piper, Bruce Honeycutt and Mark Hall at its meeting on Monday evening.

“The truck we have now is a 1995,” Piper said. “That is the one we would like to replace. Sometimes opportunity knocks and we don’t expect it and you have to open the door to let it in. We’ve spent a lot of money in the last few years keeping trucks together and have replaced many parts. A fire truck is like anything else; it eventually wears out.

“With engine two, it’s getting to that point where we’ve started to see the maintenance costs continuing to increase every year.”

The engine the fire department has been using is 18 years old, and has had two frame rails replaced. The new truck would cost $380,000 and most likely would be purchased with a leasing option. A 10 percent down payment would be required, and the township could finance the rest with yearly payments with an annual percentage interest rate of 3.89 percent.

The 10 percent down payment equals $38,000, and the trade in price on the current engine in use by the department is around $40,000. The board discussed using the current engine as a trade-in and making the down payment on the new truck, delaying the second payment on the new truck until 2014. The board agreed to look into local financing options and allow Township Supervisor Marie Twite to go ahead with negotiations on the truck and make the purchase on behalf of the board with the best deal available.

In other business:

the board has had an initial meeting with the city to negotiate contract provisions to manage the water department and rates, and will be looking at concepts provided by the city along with providing its own ideas on the department.

the board received correspondence concerning a request for an access road off of M-32 in the west corridor to increase travel safety. Twite will be bringing up the correspondence at the next Intergovernmental Road Commission meeting and will bring the discussion back to the board with more information.

the board approved to spend a portion of the $500 set aside in the budget to help remove the phragmites invasive species in the area.

Brian Burns of Presque Isle Electric and Gas Co-Op approached the board about considering a franchise request from the not-for-profit allowing the possibility of future accounts in the area. The board attorney will be reviewing the franchise request and recommending an action to the board at a later time.

Nicole Grulke can be reached via email at or by phone at 358-5687. Follow Nicole on Twitter @ng_alpenanews.