Commissioners make purchases, hope to sort another

PLYMOUTH — The Marshall County Sheriff’s Office will have new squad cars — that will be trucks.
The Marshall County Commissioners opened bids for four new vehicles for the department that will be four door, four wheel drive pick up trucks, replacing four sedan cruisers in the fleet. Representatives of the sheriff’s office explained that the vehicles hold their value longer than sedans and have a greater resale at trade-in time. It was also said that several other local sheriffs departments have added pick-up trucks to their fleet and that they would be useful in bad winter weather.
Country Auto of Plymouth submitted a low bid of $75,708 for the vehicles. Oliver Ford of Plymouth submitted a bid of $97,048. Country’s low bid for the vehicles was accepted with Sheriff’s Deputy Rex Gilli-land stating that the department budget for this year’s new vehicles was $82,000.
In other business:
• The Commissioners approved the purchase of a Bantam Truck Crane for the Marshall County Highway Department. The crane is currently owned by Don Stubbs who has used the machinery as a private contractor for the county, cleaning debris from bridges. Stubbs is retired and can no longer do the work for the county and offered the 1959 crane for sale for $4,500.
Highway Department Superintendent Neal Haeck said the county contracted Stubbs to do the work on an hourly basis and usually paid him a total of around $1,500 each year, adding that the truck crane was in good shape and worth the price. He explained the crane could be used for other duties in the county and would pay for itself in several years.
• Construction on the Pierce Street Bridge has hit a bit of a snag.
The purchase of the parcels of land on the corners of the bridge had been moving ahead easily, but a parcel on the northwest corner has become a sticky legal problem.
The owners of the property are deceased and the property is further entangled by the fact that federal authorities took out a judgment on one of the owners before their death.
County Attorney Jim Clevenger said it was unclear if the federal government had some sort of lien against the property but the ownership would have to be determined and the property bought or the building of the bridge could not continue.
The parcel in question is 535 square feet on the structures northwest corner.