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Walnut to buy new backhoe

WALNUT — The Walnut Village Board voted to purchase a new backhoe for the village maintenance department.

Carl Minks, village superintendent, had previously presented to the board a request to consider the purchase of a new  backhoe. After earlier discussions, the board had asked Minks to obtain bids on what a new backhoe would cost. He was also asked to provide information on the charges for the repairs needed for the 1997 model currently owned by the village.

Minks was able to provide both the initial cost of repairs and also the cost of a new backhoe. General repairs on the 1997 backhoe would be in excess of $34,000, and that estimate does not include repairs to the engine which could bring that total up by several thousand dollars. It would also cost the village approximately $4,400 to rent a replacement backhoe for the time the necessary repairs were being completed.

Minks then provided the board with two bids for the purchase of a new backhoe. The first bid was for a Caterpillar model which after trade-in, would cost $61,815. It would be received approximately 22 weeks after purchase.

The second bid was for a new John Deere model with a final purchase price, after trade-in, of $61,000 and could be delivered in four to six weeks. Minks also commented these bids reflect a municipal discount that both Caterpillar and John Deere provide and include warranties.

The purchase of a used backhoe would not provide any warranty, and the municipal discount is not available on used equipment. Minks also said the current backhoe is a John Deere model, and it has been reliable but appreciates the fact that parts have always been readily available, if needed.

After discussion by the board, Trustee Lee Sarver offered a motion to purchase the new John Deere model backhoe for $61,000. This motion was approved by the board, and Minks will proceed with making the arrangement for the purchase and delivery.

Also, Village Clerk Tiffany Pistole presented to the board a revision in the cemetery ordinances to include the requirement of a vault for all burials in the Walnut Cemetery. Pistole also presented a revision in the legal description of the cemetery to include the Lamb Addition, the newest addition at the cemetery. This addition was made quite some time ago, but the legal description had never been changed. The changes were approved by the board.

In additional business involving the cemetery, board member Duane Christensen brought up the condition of the overhead door on the storage building on the property. Christensen felt the door should be replaced, saying he building would be both more secure with a new door and also have a much better appearance. The board requested Minks obtain bids for the replacement of this overhead door.

The board also agreed to discontinue its membership in the North Central Illinois Council of Governments. The board has not used the services provided by this organization for several years, and therefore, felt continuing the membership and paying the dues is not a necessary expense.

The Village Police Department will be providing additional officers and coverage during the Fourth of July celebration. The public should be aware that no parking signs will be placed along Main Street for the parade route on Saturday.

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