ORIGINALLY WRITTEN BRENDA CONYERS
After nearly an hour of discussing a recommendation made by system coordinator Lloyd Davies, the county commissioners voted at their Jan. 16 to purchase a Canon Image Runner 330 from Business Systems of Wichita for $12,465.
The meeting was rescheduled from the usual Monday time because of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
The office machine will be used specifically in the county appraiser’s office, along with other courthouse offices having access to its use.
The decision about the purchase was pending while County Appraiser Clint Anderson gathered information from the two vendors, along with a recommendation from Davies, system coordinator, for the right machine to meet current and future needs.
Gene Schmill of Business Systems and Joe Kukula of Sunflower Office Products, Hillsboro, were both present at the meeting.
Davies found little differences in the two machines that would serve the courthouse as a copier, scanner and printing unit. The Canon unit, however, could be used in the future for e-mail integration, which Davies thought would be a part of the courthouse system at some future date.
Both units carry a “total satisfaction” warranty, allows replacement should there be problems with the machine. Service call response time was also compared and found to be comparable.
The Xerox product offered one of three plans for its maintenance agreement, while the Canon was based according to volume.
Anderson reported, after having both of the machines in the office for a trial period, that staff members preferred the Canon unit, but they also found little difference in the quality or productivity of either machine.
Commissioner Bob Hein said, “I have always felt we should buy in the county when we can.”
Schmill responded that he lived in Marion County, was active in his community, paid his taxes and
didn’t know what more he could do to be considered a part of the county.
“The fact that I represent a firm based in Wichita should be a secondary consideration,” Schmill said.
Commissioner Howard Collett said the office staff should be happy with the machine chosen, “if there isn’t a wide difference in cost.”
In response, Hein said, “I talked with the employees downstairs, and they told me they were happy with either one.”
Commission Chairman Leroy Wetta asked for the opinions of the commission members.
Collett said, “We have a consultant, an expert with us. I would like for him to make a solid recommendation for us to act on.”
Davies said despite the discussion, he still preferred the Canon.
With a 4 percent difference in price, the commission voted to purchase the Canon Unit from Wichita, with Hein voting no in the 2-1 vote.
In other business, County Clerk Carol Maggard reported a contract price increase from the Wells Group for the general maintenance on the heating and cooling system of the jail. The cost will be $702 per quarter, representing a $128 increase for the year.
Gerald Kelsey, superintendent of road and bridges, announced the delivery of the three 1995 motorgraders on Jan. 12. The snowplows would be delivered later in the week.
Hein told Kelsey that he had received notes and comments from Tampa residents of appreciation for the road work done in that part of the county.
County health nurse Jan Moffitt gave an update on the department, reviewing the grants and their uses for the commissioners.
She also reported looking for funds to re-start the Family Planning program, which had previously been offered in Marion County several years ago as a Harvey-Marion county joint effort.
Moffitt also requested approval to participate in a Kansas Public Health Certificate program offered through University of Kansas. The cost is $702, which will be paid through the health department budget.
Hein appointed Kent Becker from Durham to the Marion County Lake Board, filling the vacancy left after Tom Harmon resigned.