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City Council Approves More Than $1 Million in Expenses for Santa Monica's Big Blue Bus

Santa Monica Real Estate Company, Roque and Mark


By Jason Islas
Staff Writer

January 9, 2013 -- The City Council approved $1.1 million in expenses Tuesday to keep Santa Monica's Big Blue Bus fleet in tip-top shape.

The City Council approved two contracts as part of its consent calendar Tuesday night, one with a company that would help repair and rebuild damaged electronics on buses and the other to a company that would upgrade BBB's fuel management system.

California-based InterconTechnologies, Inc. was awarded a $100,000 one-year contract -- with the option to renew for up to three years -- to provide BBB with rebuilt electronic components as well as repair damaged electronics.

“The cost of purchasing Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) new mirrors, programmable logic controller panels, battery chargers and other equipment for the Big Blue Bus revenue service fleet would significantly exceed $100,000 per fiscal year,” staff wrote.

“Therefore, rebuilt electronic components are used where feasible to reduce costs and reduce the waste associated with installing new components to replace damaged components,” according to staff.

Staff called the new process, in which BBB technicians remove damaged components and send them away for repair, “more efficient than sustaining an in-house electronics rebuild shop.”

Trapeze Inc., out of Pensylvannia, got an extra $152,725 added to its yearly contract with City to help upgrade the BBB's fuel management system. The Council approved up to $837,904 for Trapeze Inc. over the next four years.

“The BBB’s existing fuel management system requires manual input of the bus number, vehicle mileage, dispenser number and employee number to trigger transactions,” staff wrote. “This is time consuming and subject to data entry error.”

The new automated system, however, would save time and reduce the chance of human error, according to staff.

“The upgrade would provide accurate fuel usage, fluids reporting and mileage travel reports,” which staff says are all vital data which “measure the effectiveness of maintenance practices and provide accountability for all vehicles fueling at the fuel islands.”

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