The Village of South Pekin is getting a lift in its fleet of service vehicles from a corporate good neighbor.
Ameren Illinois will donate a 2006 Ford F-550 bucket truck to the village at 10 a.m. Friday at the South Pekin Village Hall, 209 Main St. It is valued at $7,800. It has served in a Ameren Illinois’ mobile fleet over the past several years.
The aerial truck gives the village the ability to make improvements or repairs in high areas. The village does not currently have a bucket truck.
Village President Chad Lamberson said the truck will be a welcome addition to South Pekin.
“Where it will be beneficial is we have areas especially along the alleys and some of the streets where we have trees that do need to be trimmed back,” said Lamberson. “It will be really helpful for that.
“It will also be very helpful for changing out any of the light bulbs in the park or on the buildings. Another example is our flag pole. The pulley block on the top needs to be replaced. But that’s very difficult for us to get up there and do it. Hanging flags for July Fourth and things like that. It will be fantastic for those types of activities.”
Lamberson said safety is always a concern for employees.
“The two biggest things that I see with it, obviously number one is safety — they don’t have to be on ladders, and they have a much more controlled piece of equipment,” said Lamberson. “But also efficiency.
“Think about it. The time it takes to get a ladder, to set up to hang a flag on Main Street there. To be able to just pull up, boom out, do it and move to the next one will be much more efficient. So safety and efficiency both will add a lot of value to the village.”
Ameren spokeswoman Stacey Shangraw said Ameren has an equipment donation program to help area governments and organizations. Communities must contact Ameren and make a request in writing on official letterhead and be signed by a representative in an official capacity such as a mayor, executive director or city manager.
The request must specify the type of vehicle or equipment being sought and how it will be used. Special consideration will be made for organizations or municipalities which can demonstrate that the vehicle or equipment will provide a benefit to the public — save taxpayer money, improve safety and so on, said Shangraw. The request must be accompanied by documentation of the organization’s 501(c)(3) not-for-profit status.
The donation is based on the availability of the piece of equipment in the company’s inventory.
In 2016, Marquette Heights, the Decatur Park District, Moweaqua and Hanna City all received equipment donations.
Follow Sharon Woods Harris at Twitter.com/sharrispekin