eBay sale possible
By Elsa Maxey
An approval payment request for Motorola radios for the sheriff’s department brings into focus a process that may leave an incoming elected official with equipment he may not want. That could mean an unnecessary expense on the part of Fort Bend County taxpayers. Incoming Sheriff Troy Nehels is the elected official who will replace retiring Sheriff Milton Wright when he takes office next year.
Last week in what appeared to be a runaway train process, Fort Bend County Commissioners were intent at slowing down the locomotive to sort out what had taken place. “We approved the budget for radios, but they may not be the kind the new sheriff wants,” Commissioner James Patterson told the court. “We’re letting somebody that’s not going to use these radios decide what we’re purchasing when there’s no rush to it.”
But county staff said that 14 new mobile radios were already here noting that the item on the commissioners agenda was not for approving the purchase order, but for an approval for payment amounting to $41,000. It was also reported that the invoice for payment has a September 27 date.
“Let’s assume we buy them now and he doesn’t want them, what do we do, do we sell them on eBay,” asked Morrison as he referred to Nehels. Whether they’re still in the boxes and could be returned was suggested by staff as a possibility. But, “they’re out of the box,” said the staff member precipitating chuckles from the audience.
“We put it in the budget, approved the purchase order, I believe we put them in service and I don’t think we’re going to hold up paying the vendor,” Judge Bob Hebert said summarily before the unanimous vote approving the radio payment.
The eBay option may still be viable.