Mark Dietz, Polk County director of buildings and grounds, approached the county board at its most recent meeting to discuss what he found out about the 911 generator. Previously, an inspector from Minneapolis came to the Law Enforcement Center (LEC) recently to look things over and found that the generator was not in good shape.
The inspector said the motor is bad, the machine is outdated and parts for that model are no longer made. The inspector did not want to even turn it on after finding file shavings in the oil and indications that the rings and bearings needed to be replaced as well. The generator could be rebuilt, but the parts would be different and the cost would be around $50,000. Dietz told the board they "need to be ready to move quickly."
The inspector did give a quote of $120,000 for a new generator, but Dietz reassured the board that he has other bids in the works from places like Titan Machinery. He wants to have at least three opinions before recommending the replacement of the generator. Dietz also mentioned that it has sat with no use for quite some time.
"Sometimes lack of use can be worse than over-use," said Commissioner Warren Affeldt. The board agreed.
Dietz suggested that they look at a possible outside unit so they wouldn't have to remove a wall to replace the generator. He also mentioned that the fuel tank that sits in the generator room was considered non-compliant with statute and they need to do something about it soon.
The board will wait to hear other opinions and get a couple more quotes before they act on fixing or replacing the generator.
The generator discussion will continue at the Oct. 22 board meeting.