Charleston, WV, Going Online to Sell Surplus Equipment

Tue December 30, 2003 - National Edition

CHARLESTON, WV (AP) Need an old street sweeper or some construction equipment? City officials want to make you a deal online.

City Council decided recently to sell Charleston’s bulky surplus equipment through a Web site operated by an Oregon agency.

The Web site, run by the Oregon State Agency for Surplus Property, will help city officials reach a wider range of shoppers, said Gary Smith, who manages Charleston’s vehicles.

City Manager David Molgaard said Charleston made $80,000 at a September auction, and the city could increase that by 25 percent by going online. The city recently sold a street sweeper for $7,000; an unidentified city sold a similar sweeper for $25,000 on eBay.

“There’s not much of a market locally for some of the larger pieces of equipment,” Smith said.

Charleston will pay the state of Oregon $230 for each small vehicle sold and 7 percent of the sale price for each large piece of equipment. City officials learned of the Web site from officials in Lynchburg, VA, who also use the service.

Oregon is “already doing it for cities in other states,” Molgaard said. “It will save us the time and expense of trying to set up our own site.”