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Council approves purchase of software for fuel and fleet management system

By Staff | Nov 1, 2011

Cape Coral City Council approved waiving the bid process to buy $331,000 worth of software for fuel and fleet management systems Monday, although the “FASTER” fleet management system was the only portion to require a waiver of that process, according to city staff.

The “FASTER” software carried a price tag of $148,700, with a recurring annual cost of $17,150.

Purchase of software for the city’s fuel management system – at a total cost of 132,577.76 with an additional annual recurring cost of $49,909.64 – presumably puts to rest the controversy surrounding the city’s fuel use that had been ongoing for nearly a year.

City Manager Gary King said the process related to fuel management has been an effort to protect the city’s assets and not to circumvent any of the city’s laws.

“We’re trying to put a fuel system in place we can trust, that’s all were doing,” he said.

The vote was approved with a 53 vote, with Councilmembers Derrick Donnell, Kevin McGrail and Marty McClain dissenting.

Those on the losing end of the vote felt that putting the fuel management system portion out for bid was not only the prudent thing to do financially, but could also be protecting the city in the long run.

“My concern is we’re looking at a single source vendor,” McGrail said. “Without the RFP (Request for Proposal) process we’re committing to a single vendor without knowing what’s out there.”

Donnell said he thought the smart move would be to look at integrating all of the city’s software systems instead of going solely with SCI, after Finance Director Victoria Bateman said many of the city’s systems were not maintained or compatible.

“We might do ourselves a greater service and look at the entire system,” Donnell said. “I think we need to step back and take a breath. We need to put all this stuff out for RFP and look at it from a global perspective.”

SCI will also maintain the city’s fuel records, using real time wireless data to keep track of how much goes in and out of city vehicles, as well as how much fuel the city actually receives.

Bateman said it would take four to six months to go out for the RFP process and the city would likely spend more in the long run, anyway.

“Considering the millions spent every year, I think it’s small potatoes for what we gain,” Bateman said of the associated costs.

Councilmember Bill Deile said the solution might not be the best but it’s the cheapest.

“It’s clear this isn’t the best solution but it’s the solution we can afford,” Deile said.

Councilmember Pete Brandt agreed. He added that if the process started over, it would be a waste of time and money already spent.

“It would probably be a lot of money to start all over again and if we kick this down the road were going to waste time,” Brandt added.