The board unanimously approved the purchase of a 2014 Morbark 15R wood chipper from A. Montano Company Inc. of Saugerties at a cost of $47,068. The price includes a $4,000 trade-in allowance for a smaller, much older chipper. The entire purchase will be funded through the state Consolidated Local Street and Highway Improvement Program, or CHIPS.
The town did not use the normal competitive bid process for this purchase, instead using an existing Pennsylvania state bid through an exception known as the “Piggybacking Law,” allowing municipalities to “piggyback” onto other state bids.
The chipper will be used to help control the Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive species that has destroyed ash trees throughout the state. One of the few ways to kill the larvae is to chip the wood of infested trees, Highway Superintendent Doug Myer said.
The reason the town did not go out to bid for this chipper was the liability of the old chipper. Buying through an existing bid allows the town to trade in the old model, he said.