OC Committee Supports 9th Jeep Purchase

OCEAN CITY – With a better understanding of how an additional Jeep would be purchased for the Boardwalk trams, members of a resort committee this week agreed to send a favorable recommendation to the Mayor and Council.

On Tuesday, the Ocean City Transportation Committee voted unanimously to forward a favorable recommendation to purchase a ninth Jeep Wrangler for the Boardwalk trams at a cost of $31,696 and to upfit the vehicle at a cost of around $16,000.

“When all is said and done, as we head into the summer of 2019 we will have nine Jeeps and eight trailing units,” said Public Works Director Hal Adkins, “the ninth Jeep being there to maximize deployments in case a transmission went out or something like that.”

Late last year, the Mayor and Council opted to replace the existing motor units of the Boardwalk trams with eight Jeep Wranglers. And last week, officials approved an ordinance authorizing the purchase of the eight Jeeps and new tram coaches – which would include surveillance cameras – at a total cost of around $1.3 million.

Adkins told the committee this week, however, that the town’s risk manager found no need to install the surveillance cameras on the trams at this time, and Procurement Manager Catrice Parsons added that the $28,000 budgeted for the camera systems would no longer be used.

“We are going to be taking the money from which we were going to be purchasing the cameras to purchase the ninth Jeep …,” she said. “I can still get the Jeep off contract. I think $31,696 is the cost of it, so we are just a few thousand dollars short.”

Parsons also noted additional savings found in the town’s Vehicle Trust Fund. She said she would go before the Mayor and Council to ask that $16,000 be appropriated for the upfitting of the ninth Jeep.

The committee voted unanimously to recommend the purchase of an additional Jeep at $31,696 through the lease purchase agreement approved by council and to use $16,000 in savings from the Vehicle Trust Fund to cover the cost of upfitting the vehicle.

About The Author: Bethany Hooper

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Bethany Hooper has been with The Dispatch since 2016. She currently covers various general stories. Hooper graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2012 and the University of Maryland in 2016, where she completed double majors in journalism and economics.