On Thursday night, the Peachtree City council opted to take a multi-pronged approach to keeping the city looking neat and helping its landscaping to flourish.
Using three contractors and moving some of the landscaping work back into the hands of city personnel will cover more ground. And, said Community Services director Jon Rorie, it will result in a net saving for the city, as opposed to handing the job to the lowest bidder. With $226,789 budgeted for FY2014, it would result in an increase of $118,000.
According to Rorie, over the course of the last few years the city has seen both advantages and disadvantages from outsourcing services, but no matter how good or bad, the city is the one held responsible. Since the outsourcing landscaping in 2010, the results “have been marginal at best, with common complaints regarding how the city does not look as good as it used to.”
“Simply put, we must re-think our service delivery models that are cost effective and maximize the use of our resources. Under our proposed service delivery model, annual funding will be utilized to award contracts to multiple vendors and hire additional personnel to produce that service. The intent is to place performance accountability on the production side so that choice and competition can be achieved.”
Rorie recommended paying three separate vendors a total of $278,500. The cost for additional personnel, equipment, and related supplies to insource portions of landscaping service is estimated at $170,000 for FY 2014.
The bids for outsourcing the city’s landscape projects included State Route 54 and 74; 37 primary roads including Peachtree Parkway, MacDuff Parkway and Kedron Drive among others; right-of-way tree trimming; subdivision and other landscaped islands (there are approximately 500 throughout the city); and all 12 municipal facilities (City Hall, the police and fire departments, etc) and 12 city parks.
Overall, the total estimated increase in FY 2014 is approximately $221,411. In FY 2015 an estimated increase of $275,000 over the current budget.
The Brickman Group LTD was awarded the bid for landscape maintenance services along SR 74 and SR 54 at a cost of $49,000. ValleyCrest Landscape Maintenance, Inc was award the bid - not to exceed $100,000 - for right-of-way trimming along primary and secondary roads; and True Green Landcare, LLC was given the job, totalling $129,500 for landscape service for subdivision and city landscape islands.
Additionally, the council approved of the request for in-sourcing landscaping services along primary and secondary roads, and within municipal facilities and parks. To do this, they agreed to hire four full time and two seasonal workers. Also, the city needs to absorb the start-up costs for personnel and equipment at a cost of approximately $170,000. In 2015, the cost for personnel and equipment is estimated at $223,000.