RUMFORD — The Board of Selectmen got inventive Thursday night to speed the process of acquiring a needed sander before the next snowstorm.

Public Works Superintendent Andy Russell said the 20-year-old hopper sander they use on the back of the No. 4 plow truck for Isthmus, Wyman Hill and Hall Hill has to be replaced. He said it was damaged at the end of the last storm and is no longer usable.

“This one’s at the end of its life cycle,” Russell said.

The issue is that the bid process would take two weeks or more.

Russell asked if the board could forgo the bidding process and move the process along quickly before another storm hits.

The town’s purchasing policy says approval can be given up to $2,000 without going out to bid. The board can take quotes of up to $5,000, and after that, they have to go out to bid.

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“I can understand the sense of urgency,” Board Chairman Brad Adley said.

But Selectman Mark Belanger noted that they have this policy for a reason.

Town Manager John Madigan said, “There’s always extenuating circumstances. You have to be somewhat flexible.”

Russell said he has quoted it out to the two companies they normally use, and the cost would be about $11,000.

Belanger asked how many sanders the town has. Russell said they have eight or nine.

Adley suggested that, under this critical circumstance, they have a special meeting to review the two bids.

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Selectman Peter Chase said that to expedite the process, the town could email out the bid specs rather than mailing them, then have the two businesses submit their bids by email to the Town Office.

That was agreeable to the board, which agreed to meet at 4 p.m. Monday to approve a bid.

In other business, the board approved a library construction interior bid from H.E. Callahan of Auburn of $28,635, which was the lowest of four bids.

On Aug. 5, the library received a $45,000 grant from the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation.

The grant will be used for a reading room ceiling restoration at the library. The project involves removal of the false ceiling and restoring the vaulted ceiling to the way it was originally, along with different lighting.

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