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local gov't

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Precision Lawn, Nov 4, 2007.

  1. Precision Lawn

    Precision Lawn Senior Member
    Messages: 334

    Has anyone work for their local gov't doing snow removal
     
  2. fortywinks

    fortywinks Member
    from NE OH
    Messages: 82

    municipal...equals cheap

    I am new to plowing and just bid a local municipal contract(seasonal). Spent time calculating what it would cost to make sure the job gets done right, hire sub-contractors and still make some money. I was the only bidder and was told I was way too high. They are probably going to re-bid or just gamble and wait. They fail to see that last years bidder, (only one last year too) didn't bid because he couldn't possibly have made any money he was so low. They want the contractor to risk that there won't be any snow and still get paid. That's their enticement to try and get something for next to nothing. I am preparing for other jobs.
     
  3. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    That's why I don't go for municipal work - it's way too cheap. Another consideration is that you will need additional insurance - Municipal. The local contractor here asked me to work for him a few years ago - $15/hr. He'd gotten it at $50/hr "to the town". He got underbid last winter. The last time I was asked by a town contractor, I just told him "You can't afford me." Really p---ed him off, but I don't get asked any more.
     
  4. salopez

    salopez Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    I was really thinking about working for SHA in Howard county...but it just wasnt worth it. They were offering about 30 less then I get on my comercial accounts, and not standby. Plus less hours.

    I hear that there are some counties that pay/work better.
     
  5. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,760

    wait
    you are the only bidder and they are reopening the bid?
    that's crap:angry:
    I'm not sure they can do that, I'd look into it, .gov's have LOTS of rules they have to follow

    you were low bidder, you should win the contract.
     
  6. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Lone Cowboy, I don't know about that. Might be different in different localities, but I had a school do that. They got several bids (including mine). They rejected them all and went with a guy who didn't submit a bid but had talked to a shool board member and offered to plow in exchange for his kid's tuition. I've heard of other governmental entities rejecting all bids, too.
     
  7. santelikk

    santelikk Member
    Messages: 67

    Bids can be rejected if the are "x" percentage above an estimate. If they are using last years cost as a benchmark then that might explain it.
     
  8. Precision Lawn

    Precision Lawn Senior Member
    Messages: 334

    gov't

    It pays more then what I can get for subbing anf plus you get a very noice retainer fee plus you get call out when the county trucks are call out. From what I have seen in the pass the county trucks are out there well before the storm comes.
    For insurance there is none extra insurance that I need
    There was no bidding you just sign up for the winter and then you are in.
    What you do for them is salting the roads and then plowing when needed,they supply the salt to you
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2007
  9. salopez

    salopez Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    SHA in Howard does not actually call you out until you are needed....so no standby time.
    the retainer here is only a grand plus only offering 100 per hour for my 40k gvw truck with my own plow and spreader which is a good bit less then even my sub rates.

    if there was standby time and enough work they never work more then 16 hours (which is what we run on a 4" storm) I probably would have done it.

    I have heard that Howard SHA is the worst shop to work with. I believe Mont. SHA and even the county offers standby for single axels....

    who knows.
     
  10. Precision Lawn

    Precision Lawn Senior Member
    Messages: 334

    gov't

    Steve

    These are for my 1 ton trucks with 8 foot hoppers and plows, nothing as big as your truck
    This is for county roads not state. I was told today that they will call you out when the call their crews in.
    For the retainer it was more then thousand dollars
    I'm going to give it a shot this year. I sign my 4 1 ton trucks with them.
    I have in the past did county gov't owned parking lots and they didn't call you out until 4 inches.
     
  11. salopez

    salopez Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    Nice!
    I wish I could have found something like that around here...you wouldnt even want to see the rates they were offering for one tons!

    I would have done the same as you.

    Please let me know how it goes....
     
  12. fortywinks

    fortywinks Member
    from NE OH
    Messages: 82

    Re-bid...

    In the bid specs/packet it says the City retains the right to reject any or all bids. I knew that going in and I was pretty sure that I would be the only bidder. I still bid what I thought the job was worth. I could have gone a little cheaper and MAYBE come out ok or I could have bid a lot cheaper, gotten the contract then lost money and wasted my time. The city has not yet rejected my bid and they still kept my retainer. They do have to return that once they reject the bid. So now I wait and see, maybe they will come up with a per push option. If they don't then I will propose one and see what happens. I think that would be more beneficial to all concerned anyway. I only make money when I plow and the city only pays when that happens. No roll of the dice on a seasonal.
     
  13. I've had my plow for two winters now here in Massachusetts, but it hasn't snowed enough in that time for me to do any plowing. This year I decided to give the local towns a call, and ended up in the right place at the right time. I've been hired as a town subcontractor and will go out with a team of larger town trucks (six or ten-wheel), following them, and doing stuff like cleanup at intersections. Occasionally they will send me down some smaller roads on my own. The pay is about $60/hr and they say they'll call me in at about two inches of snow. Since my truck is already registered commercially and insured commercially (with tons of liability coverage) for my marine business, my insurance company added municipal plowing for only $215. Not bad if you ask me.

    I went this route to specifically avoid the trouble of having lots of residential accounts, lots of back and forth on the truck, and the hassle of collecting money from many people. Am I off base?
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2007
  14. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    No. Sounds like a winner to me.