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City raises purchase limits

By Sara McManamy-Johnson sjohnson@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 17, 2015 at 6:20 PM

Lebanon City Council on Tuesday finalized a change to the city’s charter, increasing individual purchasing limits.

Up to this point, purchases costing less than $5,000 could be approved without city council approval.

“In 1989, it was changed from $2,500 to $5,000,” said Commissioner of Finance and Revenue Robert Springer at the time. “In one sense, we’re asking for the same kind of limit, it’s just inflation has moved it.”

He said $10,000 in today’s dollars is roughly equivalent to $5,000 in 1989’s dollars.

Councilors voted in December to ask the state to allow the city to amend its charter to implement the change. The state approved the requested private act, and councilors Tuesday voted to pass a resolution adopting the change.

Councilor Kathy Warmath, who voted against sending the request to the state in December, was the only “no” vote.

She explained her opposition.

“It’s not my money that is actually involved in this,” said Warmath. “I just felt like having a $10,000 purchase power is high.”

She said council also meets frequently enough that requiring council approval doesn’t delay the purchasing process overly much.

With this change, items costing $10,000 or less can be bought without council approval or sealed bids.

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