The City of Ripon just hired Grover Landscape Services.
The Modesto-based business was awarded the contract that consists of maintaining 6.75 miles of landscaped areas, including all City landscaped districts that “are funded by an assessment collected from properties with these districts,” said Director of Public Works Ted Johnston at the April 10 Ripon City Council meeting.
Grover Landscape Services, at $179,412, was one of two bidding for the job – the other was Odyssey Landscaping Company – once handled by the Public Works Department.
During the Recession of nearly 10 years ago, the City was forced to eliminate 17 full-time positions in Public Works in the Parks Department.
“It’s estimated that two full-time equivalents of Public Works staff would be able to be reallocated to the Parks Department if Grover Landscape Services was awarded all landscaped areas within the public right of way,” Johnston said.
Main Street between Wilma Avenue and Nourse Street, a nine-block stretch, is not part of the public right of way in the City’s maintenance district.
“If at some point in the future the City’s finances worsen (like that of 2008), staff would recommend the contract with Grover Landscape Services be cancelled and the Public Works staff be allocated back as they are today,” Johnston added.
He also assured elected leaders that landscape work has certain specifications and that the job “will be held to City standards.”