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Romeoville pilot program to secure agreements for Police

Megann Horstead, Reporter-news@thetimesweekly.com | 5/23/2018, 3:25 p.m.
Thetimesweekly.com The Romeoville Village Board of Trustees agreed at their last meeting on waiving the bid requirement and executing a ...

Thetimesweekly.com

The Romeoville Village Board of Trustees agreed at their last meeting on waiving the bid requirement and executing a master equity lease agreement with Enterprise FM Trust concerning quotes for 10 police vehicles.

Action taken by the board will give the Romeoville Police Department added flexibility to get newer, more efficient and technically advanced vehicles equipped with equipment.

None of the other Village departments have opted in favor of using a program of this type.

The new fleet will replace seven marked police squad vehicles and three unmarked police vehicles. In return, Romeoville Police will acquire seven 2018 Ford Police Interceptor Utility Vehicles and three 2018 Ford Sedan Police Vehicles from Enterprise Fleet Management.

Romeoville Police currently have 35 squad cars and 10 unmarked police vehicles. Commonly, staff is using vehicles that are 10 years old and have traveled more than 100,000 miles.

“Leasing may be slightly more expensive than purchasing on a year-to-year basis, but the advantages far outweigh that,” Finance Director Kirk Openchowski said.

The total cost for the year amounts to $228,600, including lease and equipment payments, and is budgeted for in the Village of Romeoville’s budget. Originally, the board had budgeted $300,000 to satisfy this aim.

Under the pilot program, Romeoville Police can swap out their vehicles every five years.

Mayor John Noak said if you really look at it and had to buy a vehicle, it’ll cost more in the end considering the maintenance and repair costs.

Romeoville is not the first municipality to introduce a program of this type. Similar lease agreements have been secured in Chicago and Rockford.

Trustee Jose “Joe” Chavez acknowledged that the Village has done its math and contended that some people believe a car is just being broken in at 100,000 miles.

Day-to-day maintenance of the new fleet will remain the Village’s responsibility.

In a unanimous decision, officials agreed on a 60-month lease agreement with a total cost of $576,636.40.

It is the Village’s desire to begin by leasing some Romeoville Police vehicles, with the potential option to create a more robust program that includes the Fire and Public Works departments

Contract for Route 53 final design and engineering services approved

Also at the meeting, plans to improve the Route 53 corridor from Airport to Renwick roads continue to move forward.

The project is made possible thanks, in part, to collaboration between the Village of Romeoville and Lewis University.

“It’s been a long process,” Assistant Village Administrator Dawn Caldwell said. “There’s been some great headway we’ve made.”

Improvements include entry monuments, screen walls, fencing, signage, a pedestrian walkway, landscape, planted medians, lighting and banners. The contract, as presented, amounts to approximately $2 million, excluding costs for burial of the overhead utilities.

The Village is primarily responsible for underground utility costs, with the university contributing the funds needed for lighting and additional improvements.

Lewis University intends to reimburse the Village for 75 percent of the costs they take on as stipulated in the final design and engineering services contract.