LA MARQUE — The city of La Marque will seek bids to buy new radios for the city’s emergency responders.
The city was originally looking into buying 82 radios needed for the police and fire department through a local government purchasing cooperative. But after police and firefighters tested two different radios, the city council decided to put the purchase out to bid.
The city can spend up to $350,000 to buy new police, fire and code enforcement radios with digital radio capability, according to city documents. Through the purchasing cooperative, the city received a bid for Motorola radios that would cost about $224,800. But the city then received bids from three other companies.
The Kenwood radios bid came in at about $179,000, while a quote from EF Johnson came in at $197,518 and from Tait Communications at $169,824, according to city documents.
Police officers reported problems with dead spots and clarity with the Kenwood radios the first time they were tested along side the Motorola radios.
But after some fine-tuning and programming by a Kenwood sales representative, the issues were resolved and there were no problems during a second round of testing, La Marque police Lt. Kirk Jackson told the City Council on Monday.
The city currently uses Motorola radios and both the fire Chief Gerald Grimm and police Chief Randall Aragon have said that Motorola radios have been the radio of choice for emergency responders.
Mayor Bobby Hocking said the new round of bids should be submitted in about six to eight weeks. Hocking said he hoped the city would be able to get a better price when the new bids come in.
“As long as the public safety people are comfortable, I’m fine with whichever one,” he said.