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Council approves purchase of new police vehicle

Creston Police Department will purchase a new police vehicle after the Creston City Council unanimously approved the purchase during Tuesday’s regular meeting.

After receiving bids from all three local car dealerships, the council approved the purchase of a 2017 Ford Explorer for $18,225.

That final price includes trade-in on two older police vehicles – a 2010 Ford Crown Victoria and 2012 Dodge Charger.

Other bids included a 2017 Chevrolet Tahoe for $30,850 and a 2017 Dodge Durango for $17,818.

Bids were to include an all-wheel drive, full-sized, pursuit-rated sport utility vehicle.

Ward 1 Councilmember Ron Higgins, also a salesman at Stalker Chevrolet in Creston, said Chevrolet does not offer a vehicle that matches up with the Ford Explorer, explaining the large price difference between the two vehicles.

“I was just looking through here, what does the Explorer have that the Dodge doesn’t have?” asked Ward 6 Councilmember Dave Koets. “I couldn’t really find anything in there. I didn’t know if I was missing anything.”

Creston Police Chief Paul Ver Meer explained the Dodge Durango is not a pursuit-rated vehicle.

“It’s a special service vehicle,” Ver Meer said. “A pursuit-rated vehicle meets specifications for high-speed pursuits. A police service vehicle, which the Dodge Durango is, is more for like a K9 unit or a routine patrol, something that will not be involved in a high-speed chase.”

The council approved, 6-0, a motion from At-Large Councilmember Steve Wintermute to purchase the Ford Explorer, with At-Large Councilmember Terry Freeman abstaining from the vote because of his employment at Creston Automotive.

Street sign

Additionally, the council approved by a 6-1 vote placing a “Slow, children at play” sign on Elm Drive.

Wintermute asked if this has become a big problem, as Elm Drive is not a through street.

“My understanding is there’s some teenagers who are a little rough-riding through that area and there’s a lot more smaller kids that are playing in that area than there was in years past,” Freeman said.

Wintermute expressed concern that the teenagers the sign will target will not be read by the teenagers.

“Maybe we’d be better off parking an old police car up there for a few days,” Wintermute said.

Kevin Kruse, Public Works director, reminded the council of the wording of a city ordinance.

“I just want to point out to the council, in the ordinance it states it is unlawful for any person to sled or play games on streets or alleys,” Kruse said.

In other City Council news:

• The council unanimously approved tile roof repairs to the restored Creston Depot by Wood Roofing Company for a price not to exceed $33,074 without prior approval.

“This is just continuation of improvements we’re trying to do,” said Mike Taylor, city administrator. “Because the project last spring wasn’t as much as we thought, we could do this in this year’s budget. This company came in when we were struck by lightning and was really responsive. They were recommended by a couple of the architectural firms.”

• The council unanimously voted to adopt the final budget for Fiscal Year 2018.

• The council unanimously entered into a 2017 British Soccer Camp Agreement on behalf of the Creston Parks and Recreation Department.

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