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updated: 10/9/2011 4:15 PM

Wauconda may join other agencies in fuel consortium

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By Abby Scalf

The village of Wauconda has asked to join a fuel depot consortium with other local agencies to take advantage of savings provided by bulk purchasing.

The consortium was created in 2007 and included Wauconda Unit District 118, the Wauconda Park District and Wauconda Fire Department. The agencies first used pumps behind Wauconda Grade School and saved 40 to 50 cents per gallon by purchasing fuel, including regular unleaded and diesel, at a bulk rate.

In 2007, the consortium used a new fuel center featuring a single underground storage tank that was built on Jamie Lane. Wauconda Township joined at that time, but the village did not.

Village administrator Dave Geary explained that when the consortium was first considered, the village was receiving a rebate on fuel from a local gas station. When the station ownership changed, the village began to examine the cost District 118 was paying for bulk fuel.

"We saw that the school district was consistently getting rates 50 cents a gallon cheaper than what we would be able to purchase," Geary said. "Today, it makes sense for us."

District 118 Superintendent Daniel Coles said it is important for local government entities to help each other during tough fiscal times.

"It is important that the village be able to enjoy the benefit of reduced gas prices," he said.

Geary said the village determined it would save $12,000 and $15,000 annually by joining the consortium.

"We're accustomed to reducing our costs the last three years, including reducing 25 employees and cutting all leaf services," he said. "Any time we can save $12,000 to $15,000 is a huge amount for us."

Coles said the other members of the consortium have agreed to waive the $53,594 buy-in fee the village would pay to join.

The village would be responsible for paying attorney fees to revise the intergovernmental agreement concerning the consortium. Coles added the village may be asked to assist initially with some costs to maintain equipment.

Geary said the more entities that join the consortium, the better it can be for all the members. He said the village hopes to be able to join the consortium and use fuel service within the next month.

"The earlier, the better," Geary said.

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