May 10, 2013 - 1:00 PM
The recent donation of a pickup truck to Interior Community Services raised a few eyebrows at an April Kamloops city council meeting - but it is actually just one of several pieces of equipment to be donated in the past year under a little-known policy on surplus items.
City purchasing manager Shawn Bourrie says the city must abide by a policy on surplus, obsolete, impounded or found items, which allows donation to non-profit organizations or other government bodies up to an annual ceiling of $1,000.
Anything beyond the annual limit must be sold through public auction – that is unless council approves the donation. This happens about once per year and was the case in April when council was asked to approve a pickup truck valued at $1,500 to Interior Community Services.
Coun. Marg Spina expressed concern about ensuring the process of applying for equipment donations is fair to all organizations. Usually equipment is stockpiled and then auctioned off she was told by staff, but Spina said she would still like to see a process put in to place to keep it fair.
In the past council could not agree on the best way to ensure fair distribution, Coun. Pat Wallace said, and because they were unable to agree it was decided to be left to staff to decide. This process has never faced any criticism, she added.
The truck is just one of several items to be donated in the last year; a light bar was sent to the Municipality of Sun Peaks, an older van to the Graffiti Task Force and a u-built trailer to the Municipality of Lillooet. Several non-profit organizations within the city also received computers. Computers are one of the few items staff actually let organizations know about before hand so request applications can be filed for the equipment.
The current policy came in to effect September 2002 and also outlines the disposal of scrap metal and found or impounded items such as bicycles, which are turned over The Bike Peddler program through Kamloops Society for Community Living.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013