Coon Rapids moves up purchase of GPS units for trucks

Plans by the city of Coon Rapids to purchase GPS units for its snow plow trucks have been moved up.

The proposed 2013 budget, which the Coon Rapids City Council is scheduled to approve next month, includes money for the GPS units.

Instead, Finance Director Sharon Legg recommended that the council purchase the units now for the upcoming winter season with money from the 2012 budget.

The council unanimously approved the request. The cost is $11,000.

According to Legg, the 2013 budget allocates $16,969 in the storm water drainage fund to install the GPS units to collect data from all the snow plow trucks including salt application.

There is enough cash in the storm water drainage account to make the purchase in 2012.

“Staff has consistently been trying to reduce the amount of salt used on streets in the past by installing scales and reading devices,” Legg wrote in a report to the council.

“These new devices, along with the software, will allow accurate tracking of how much and where material is spread.”

Preventing wasted salt not only will reduce costs, but also the negative impact on the environment, Legg wrote.

Peter Bodley is at [email protected]