By Mike Petersen
Sports Editor & Staff Writer 

Skid loader purchase may take different direction

Better warranty causes Royal council to consider new bid


April 27, 2023

The purchase of a skid loader by the City of Royal was delayed so another unit can be investigated.

During the council meeting on April 12, Maintenance Superintendent Sherman Nielsen said he received a bid from Ziegler Equipment in Sheldon for a Caterpillar skid loader. He had already obtained a bid for a new Bobcat, the same brand as the city’s current unit. Although he is not familiar with Caterpillar, Nielsen said it should be comparable.

According to discussion, advantages of Caterpillar’s bid are a lower price and a better warranty.

“It’s a lot better bid than what we expected,” Nielsen noted. “It looks like it has everything we want and a better warranty.”

“That warranty is a pretty big thing,” responded Council Member Matt Goyette.

Nielsen would like to test operate the Caterpillar skid loader before a decision is made. Council members agreed to wait until next month to finalize the purchase.

No matter which model is chosen, delivery is not expected until October.

“We won’t be getting rid of the one we have for a while,” Nielsen noted.

• Grant application, insurance renewal

Improvements at Memorial Park could be enhanced through a Palo Alto Gaming Corporation grant. According to City Clerk Barb Fletcher, a designated project must fit grant guidelines. Recipients are also encouraged to purchase materials locally and use local labor.

Council members agreed that improvements at the park, which includes the former Clay Central/Everly athletic field, would be designated in the application for the $5,000 grant. If funds are awarded, the project must be completed by Dec. 31.

The council also discussed the annual property insurance renewal. Kerri Sirovy, of Community Insurance, said higher property values contributed to an increase in premium costs. She suggested that raising deductibles to $2,500 would lower the premium.

Council Member Jeff Van Westen and Fletcher agreed to study the policy and determine if any changes should be made.

In other business, Michels Corporation will return in May to complete its part of the Alliant Energy underground electrical project. Nielsen said they will add dirt where needed and repair alleys. Another company will then seed grass. According to Nielsen, Alliant has not indicated when it will resume its portion of the project.

Discussion was held regarding installing a tank to store diesel fuel. The fuel would be available for city equipment and vehicles. Nielsen suggested the tank could be located on a site near the former water plant. The council asked him to get cost estimates.

Fletcher was also authorized to obtain quotes for accounting software. The city’s current software is not compatible with annual reporting and budgeting requirements.


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