Help is on the way to Quincy's garbage program

The Quincy City Council approved the purchase of a new garbage truck on Monday night

The city of Quincy and its aging fleet of garbage trucks are getting some help.

The Quincy City Council approved the purchase of one new truck Monday night.

The council voted 11 to 3 for a resolution that allows the city to spend $153,100 on a new truck, which was accounted for in the city's most recent budget.

It would come equipped with two tipper arms that lift garbage totes and dump their contents into the truck.

A truck with tipper arms still would serve people who use garbage stickers.

Some council members voiced concern that the purchase of a truck designed for tote pickup indicates the city is moving toward another different trash collection system. But Director of Central Services Marty Stegeman said the purchase only has to do with making replacements to a 14-year-old fleet.

"The priority right now is getting a new vehicle on the road, we have an extreme amount of repair going on currently, we really need a vehicle on the road," Stegeman said.

Another motive for the purchase centers around the cost of maintenance for the current fleet of trucks.

Stegeman said the city has spent nearly $50,000 in the last two months on maintenance.

"$47,000 the last two months, and I have one sitting there right now that's a $15,000 repair," he added.

With the approval, the city could order the truck as soon as Tuesday, but a delivery date depends on the manufacturer.

The city is also exploring the option of retro-fitting its current fleet with tipper arms, but there is no guarantee the process will work.

In other council action, the city approved a short term loan of up to $600,000 for Quincy Transit Line's operating expenses.

Marty Stegeman said this is a yearly practice, but the city is requesting the loan earlier than usual.

The short-term loan would be a repaid later this year by the state's annual grants that support the program.