Claremore Daily Progress

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September 22, 2012

Helm plans to rent out drill to recover its cost

CLAREMORE —  

Rogers County District 2 Commissioner Mike Helm has plans to recuperate costs on a drilling rig by subcontracting to area counties.
The $583,938 Casa Grande drilling rig was purchased earlier this year. 
The drill could be digging up revenue for the county but it’s the origin of the purchase that has been sparking interest.
Commonly referred to as “the bridge machine” a number of citizens have made inquiries about why the county made the purchase, what they will use it for and who is qualified to operate the machinery.
The purchase was made from Boxcer Equipment and reimbursed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) under the Keetonville Road alternative project.
The intent of the purchase was to provide equipment to be used for drilling piers for bridge projects, according to Helm.
“To build our bridges we have to hire someone to drill pilot holes,” Helm said.
For example, when there are about 16 holes on a project, the cost could be approximately $45,000 plus crane rental, according to Helm.
“With this drill, this cost doesn’t exist,” Helm said.
Helm also explained that employees would be attending training to operate the equipment.
Recently Helm has also been promoting another use for the equipment.
The rig could be rented to area counties, producing revenue for Rogers County.
This would include labor charges for the time Rogers County employees would use to run the equipment for those agencies, according to Helm.
Helm’s plan is to work with the Circuit Engineering District to offer the service.
“We, the CED, would set up a rental with the CED for other counties, including the hours and operation costs for running the machine,” Helm said.
In addition, John Bickensderfer of Guy Engineering promoted the equipment rental on behalf of Helm via email to several local county commissioners.

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