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Trustees vote to buy new truck

LIBERTY — Liberty trustees voted Thursday to use $48,535 in CARES Act funding for a new truck for the township’s road department.

Stephen Stoyak, a Liberty resident and husband of former Liberty Trustee Jodi Stoyak, questioned during the virtual meeting whether that was a good use of the township’s CARES Act funding, because it isn’t a purchase to help handle the COVID-19 pandemic.

The truck is a 2020 550 Ford to handle the typical jobs in the road department, plowing, putting down salt, hauling, everyday use and other jobs the department handles, Trustee Greg Cizmar said.

The township has wanted to get a truck like it for a while, Cizmar said. The other truck the department uses for those jobs is a 2000. Other trucks in the department are from 2003 and 2006.

Trustee Arnie Clebone said the CARES Act money and improved township finances have enabled the township to make some capital improvements, like repairs to the roof and the truck purchase.

The township received several installments in CARES Act relief, deposits totalling around $600,000.

Some of the funding has been spent on touchless access to the township administration building and the bathrooms, and plans are still being made for how to spend the other funds.

Township attorney Cherry Poteet said the CARES Act made it possible to make the purchase.

“They wouldn’t have bought it without the pandemic because they wouldn’t have had the funds,” Poteet said. “They would have liked to buy it, but they didn’t have the funds without the CARES Act.”

Stoyak said he doubted the purchase met the criteria for how CARES Act funds could be used.

“We have a law director, Mr. Stoyak, and we are relying on her and I think she is pretty well versed in the law. I think we should feel confident we have a law director that knows what she is doing,” Clebone said.

The trustees are buying the truck from Fairway Ford, where trustees also are spending $41,253 for a snow plow and related equipment from the road fund, according to the meeting agenda.

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