I attended the February 15, 2022 Camden County Commission meeting at 10:00 a.m.
Initially, only Commissioners Hasty and Gohagan were present, but Commissioner Williams came in to join them about 30 minutes into the meeting. He had a meeting that was cancelled so he was able to attend.
There were a few guys in the audience who were there for the bid openings. Lydia Porter was there. She’s running for Presiding Commissioner this election. Nathan Rinne also came in shortly after the meeting started.
There was no Public Comment portion announced for this meeting. I didn’t make a big deal about that since I didn’t have anything pressing I needed to say.
Commissioner Gohagan moved to amend the agenda to open the Willow Creek Bridge repair bids first.
I’m going to warn you right now, Dear Reader. I have attended some pretty boring Commission meetings, but this one took the cake. There were stacks of sealed bids for various Road and Bridge purchases and this meeting was a real grind. Unfortunately for me, you just never know when the most boring fact ends up being really important later so I just sat there and took notes. It wasn’t always easy to hear who the bidder was or what the amount was, but the County Auditor was sitting right next to me trying to write it all down too. We both strained our ears and compared notes throughout the entire meeting so between the two of us I think got it all down.
The first agenda item was the Willow Creek Bridge opening. There were 5 bids:
Hartman and Company for $578,195.50
C&C Bridge and Concrete for $317,210
Don Schnieder Excavating for $369,700.30
Brenneke Construction for $295,144
Mira Excavating for $386,365.68
Someone asked what the engineer estimate was on the project and the county engineering contractor said it was approximately $340,000.
This item was tabled unanimously for review by the engineer and Road and Bridge.
Commissioner Williams showed up at this point.
The second item was a Sheriff bid for body armor and uniforms. The Chief Deputy said they received one bid for body armor and no bids for uniforms. I can only guess that the uniform bids were solicited late because there are several large, national uniform supply companies that could provide law enforcement uniform bids with ease. Gall’s is one big one that we always used. The Chief Deputy mentioned they tried to get a bid from Leon’s, but they couldn’t Fed Ex it to the courthouse in time for the meeting.
The single bid for the body armor was from Public Safety Outfitters for $1,681.
This bid was approved unanimously.
The third agenda item was for January tax abatements. The abatements were approved unanimously.
The fourth agenda item was for the Emergency Management Authority (EMA) mass notification system bids that were unsealed two weeks ago.
The EMA Director was present and she stated she reviewed three bids and they all exceeded requirements. She recommended the Commission approve the Hyper-Reach bid for $8,490 per year. She didn’t want to accept the Code Red bid because they would restrict notification traffic to emergency traffic only.
The EMA had previously used Nixle for its mass notifications and it sounded like there may be some issues getting some of the caller data from them to enter into the new system. Commissioner Hasty expressed some concern because tornado season was approaching. She assured the Commission there would be overlap between the two systems. I’m pretty sure that Sam has a good handle on this and she’ll make sure it’s a smooth transition.
The Commission unanimously approved the purchase of Hyper-Reach for the new mass notification system.
The next item was for the Road and Bridge Spring Bids. This is for the various contracts that Road and Bridge needs to sign for its supplies and maintenance needs. There was a giant stack of envelopes and there are no bid amounts because each company offers a variety of supplies and services for a wide spectrum of prices. Since the prices can vary from company to company, it’s not unusual for the Commission to approve multiple bids because several companies might offer various items at more affordable prices.
The boredom began to rise to astonishing levels. Halfway through, I began to regret some of my life choices. I imagined this was what it would be like to attend a White Elephant gift exchange at Satan’s house.
Nathan decided he couldn’t take anymore and left. I looked at him jealously as he strode out the door. Who knew that all along, all the Commission ever had to do to keep Nathan out of a Commission meeting was to spend an hour opening scores of bids for tires, liquid asphalt, and fuel?
Not issuing a ban prohibiting him stepping foot on any Camden County property that was overturned by a federal judge’s preliminary injunction,
Or having the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office serve a criminal search warrant based on a flawed affidavit on his Facebook account because he went to the courthouse to vote,
Or launching a ridiculous criminal investigation for Trespassing While Voting.
A few dozen pea gravel bid openings might have saved Camden County a lot of heartache, lawsuits, and money.
I’m just going to run through these bids quickly for your sake. They were all tabled for review unless I indicate otherwise.
Roadway Signs, Traffic Cones, and Barricades:
Newman Signs (from Jamestown, ND)
Ready Mix Concrete:
Ozark Ready Mix
Pursell Tires (Jeff City)
T&W Tires (Sedalia)
McKnight Tire (Jeff City)
Jim’s Tire (Sedalia)
Hertz Rental (Springfield)
AB Rental and Sales
Cummings McGowan & West (Saint Louis)
Coastal Energy (Willow Springs)
Missouri Petroleum (Saint Louis)
Asphalt and Concrete:
NB West (Pacific, MO)
Capital Materials (Linn Creek)
Grader and Plow Blades:
Bus Andrews Truck Equipment (Springfield)
Bulk Manufacturing (Pennsylvania)
Martin Equipment (Ashland)
Road Paint and Glass Beads:
Ennis-Flint (North Carolina)
Potters Industry (Malvern, PA)
Swarco Industries (Tennessee)
Surveying and Engineering:
Howe Company (Macon, MO)
Oil and Fluids:
This bid was accepted unanimously.
O’Relly’s Auto Parts
O’Reilly’s Auto Parts
This bid was accepted unanimously.
Corrugated Plastic Pipe:
Harry Cooper Supply (Springfield)
Corrugated Metal Pipe:
Metal Culverts (Jeff City)
Quarry Rock, Sand, and Gravel:
The Scott’s Concrete bid was accepted for pea gravel. The others were tabled for review.
Diesel, Fuel, and Gasoline:
Friscoe Fuel (Stoutland)
And that was that.
Thank you for reading until the end. I owe you one.
And I also wanted to remind you all know that I’ll be a guest on the Daily Show with Kevin Burns on Friday (tomorrow) at 9:00 a.m. On Key Radio 89.3 FM. Tune in to listen me run my mouth about Camden County politics and the last Camden County Republican Club meeting. We’ll also be talking about how I conned KB into being a guest judge with me at Osage High School’s Competitive Speech competition last weekend. You can listen online at: