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Hobart buys natural-gas-powered garbage trucks

Updated: March 8, 2014 6:22AM



HOBART — The city is about to get greener, with the help of grants from BP and Indiana Department of Environmental Management.

City officials announced Wednesday they are buying a new garbage truck that will run on compressed natural gas instead of diesel, a much cleaner alternative.

Hobart will pay $99,000 of the truck’s approximately $285,000 cost; the rest will be paid by a $71,415 grant from IDEM and a $114,263 grant through a BP program. The BP grant application was submitted to South Shore Clean Cities, of which Hobart is a member.

“It was the right thing to do,” Public Works director John Dubach said of the purchase.

Mayor Brian Snedecor said the new truck is one more step by the city in its efforts to be more environmentally friendly.

The city also has a paint recycling facility operated by the Public Works department and has initiated a CLEAN Community Challenge to boost recycling within municipal departments, reduce salt use on city streets and parking lots and promote native flora, among other things.

Dubach said Hobart is one of the first cities to try a CNG-powered garbage truck.

Glenn Linhart, with Best Equipment in Indianapolis, which is providing the truck body, said South Bend has four CNG garbage trucks in use and two more on order.

Dubach said he was made aware of the grant through South Shore Clean Cities.

“The grant took six to seven months to get. Ours was the biggest of 12 grants awarded,” Dubach said.

He said the new truck also operates with an automatic arm, which means 1,200 more houses will be added to the new garbage can program this year.

He said the new truck is built to order and will be ready in about 150 days.

In other matters, the Board of Public Works approved the purchase of 12 Dodge Ram 4-wheel-drive pickup trucks, eight of which will go to the police department. Thomas Dodge in Highland won the contract with the low bid of $22,634 per truck.

Police Chief Richard Zormier had requested trucks for the department, which he said would have been beneficial Wednesday night, following another heavy snowfall.

He said the trucks are less expensive than sport utility vehicles and police officers can carry barricades in the bed of the truck, which are needed to close roads due to standing water during the spring and summer.

Snedecor said the other four trucks will go to other departments.



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