PARIS — Oxford County commissioners gave Sheriff James Theriault and Chief Deputy Christopher Wainwright permission Tuesday morning to start the bid process to buy two new trucks.

Wainwright told commissioners that of the 31 vehicles the Sheriff’s Office has, eight are in the 130,000 to 140,000 mile range.

“The miles would be a lot higher, but we’re down a few officers right now, so we’re using more vehicles to keep the mileage down,” he said.

Theriault said his plan was to purchase two Chevrolet trucks now, and depending on how they hold up, “we could work on what we’re going to do with the rest of the vehicles.”

Theriault said he prefers Chevys, in terms of longevity and trade-in value.

Wainwright said that while Dodge prices are going down, in June, they’re changing the model to something completely different.


“We may save $1,500 on the purchase price of a Dodge, but we don’t want to spend more money trying to make sure the vehicles are compatible with our equipment,” Wainwright said, “We’re trying to get as much as possible out of the vehicles we get.”

The Sheriff’s Office uses Dodges, Wainwright said, noting that “they start having engine troubles around the 135,000-mile mark.”

“Some of the other agencies we’ve talked to are a lot happier with Chevrolet,” Wainwright said. “You may be able to get a Dodge for $2,000 cheaper, but the trade-in value for the Chevy tends to be $6,000 or $7,000 higher.”

Theriault told commissioners that when he served as police chief in Mexico, that department bought a Chevy truck in 2009 that is still being used by Chief Roy Hodsdon.

“I told the board that we’d keep it for five or six years, but Roy is still running it right now,” Theriault said. “I’m not guaranteeing that the trucks will last that long, but I think we should start with two trucks, and see where we go from there.”

Commissioners David Duguay of Byron, Tim Turner of Buckfield and Chairman Steve Merrill of Norway agreed to have Theriault and Wainwright start the bid process.

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