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Town seeks buy-local policy after purchasing cars from city

by Keith Corcoran

 BRIDGEWATER - This town is contemplating a buy-local policy after being legally bound to purchase two new police cars from a city-based company.

 Town staff have been directed to examine local-preference policies of other jurisdictions, including those from Kentville and the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, and report back to council.

 Local politicians will examine the findings at a future meeting.

 The move comes after council awarded a $57,534 tender to Dartmouth Motors LP to supply two 2011 Dodge Chargers.

 A local company, Saunders Motors, was one of the other bidders. The Hebbville firm offered two newer 2012 Dodge Chargers for just $930 more than the Dartmouth bid.

 Council, based on a lawyer's opinion, was forced to shy away from the local offer.

 "When it comes to that, our hands are a little bit tied and we can't just decide to buy local," noted Councillor David Mitchell.

 Deputy Mayor David Walker wants council to have that option and made the request of staff to research the issue.

 Councillor Bill McInnis suggested council look into a buy-local policy back in 2008 when Bridgewater purchased two Dodge Charger police cars from Halifax-based Steele Chrysler after some county dealerships fell short in their tender bids.

 "Maybe it is something we should look at in the future," Councillor McInnis said at the time.

 However, the issue didn't gain any traction.

 The Dodge Chargers from Dartmouth should arrive by this week, much to the delight of Police Chief Brent Crowhurst.

 "This will be beneficial to the police services as one of our vehicles is currently in a bad state," he said in a memo to chief administrative officer Ken Smith.



posted on 07/19/11
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