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Concerns Remain About Keokuk Parks Equipment

Keokuk, IA – The Keokuk City Council still has some concerns about a plan to upgrade the equipment for one city department.

Parks, Cemetery, and Bridge Department Director Gary Stepp says he needs seven new tractor-style lawn-mowers. The mowers would replace his current fleet of eight mowers.

Stepp says the new equipment would improve efficiency when changing mower decks and allow the fleet to meet safety standards.

Stepp says the new mowers would also stop the constant flow of mowers into the repair shop. He says he has spent roughly $2,300 since July 1 to keep his mowers in use.

Stepp says the retail price for the seven mowers would be about $150,000 With trade-ins, though, the cost to Keokuk would be about $90,000.

Members of the Keokuk City Council have expressed some concerns, though, during their last two workshops.

The concerns include the number of mowers versus the number of full-time employees and the timing of the purchase with winter on the way. Talk of privatizing some mowing and union requirements have also been brought up.

The panel says it will use its Sept. 10 workshop to continue the discussions. A vote could come as early as Sept. 17.