City Council approves financing for new police vehicles

The first two of 11 new Dodge Charger patrol cars could arrive at the Hannibal Police Department before the end of the month. That news was shared Tuesday night by Karen Burditt, the city’s director of finance, while discussing the financing of the vehicles with the City Council.

According to Burditt, it is estimated that delivery of the initial pair of vehicles will occur on Friday, Aug. 24. The remaining nine vehicles the city is to receive will arrive two per week after that until the order is filled.

Before the new vehicles could be secured a lease/purchase agreement had to first be finalized.

During the Aug. 7 meeting of the City Council, Burditt reported that a total of six bids were received.

“All of the banks presented the package as a lease with purchase,” she said. “US Bank and Clayton Holdings, LLC, offered to move the dollars into an escrow account. This would lock the (interest) rate and allow for payment of the cars as they are delivered.”

With an interest rate offer of 2.95 percent, Clayton Holdings, LLC, a subsidiary of Commerce Bank, was judged to be the best offer the city received. The next lowest interest rate offered was 3.42 percent by US Bank. 

With the Council approving the financing package by a vote of 6-0 (Councilman Mike Dobson was out of town), Burditt said the lease agreement would be executed on Tuesday, Aug. 21.

Chief Lyndell Davis reported last month that the patrol cars would be supplied by the state bidder, Lou Fusz Dodge of O’Fallon, whose quote was $457,670.

After trade-ins and a $108,500 down payment from the current HPD budget the city will wind up financing $297,170.

Regarding the new vehicles that his department will be receiving, Davis described them as “turn-key” ready, meaning they will be suitable to “hit the street” as soon as they arrive in town.

The Chargers will take the place of Ford Interceptors, which the city paid $264,800 for 11 of the vehicles in September 2014. The Fords, which replaced Chevy Impalas, went into service in January 2015.

According to Davis, the Interceptors now ticketed for replacement have on average in excess of 120,000 miles on them.

Reach reporter Danny Henley at danny.henley@courierpost.com