LIMA — The next summer blockbuster might fund the installation of a new LED sign outside the Allen County’s Sheriff Office.
Lt. Brett Rider, of the Allen County Sheriff’s Office Civil Division, went before Allen County Commissioners Thursday morning to request commissioners’ permission to sell six military vehicles — two MRAPs and four Humvees — in an online public auction.
Originally received in 2012 through a Department of Defense program created to re-use obsolete military vehicles, the Allen County Sheriff’s Office have since displayed the vehicles as educational tools at the Allen County Fair for the last six years. But after looking at auctions of similar vehicles on govdeals.com, the county realized selling all six could add significant funds to the county’s capital improvement coffers.
“We did some research on past sales,” Rider said. “We felt there is a potential for some money to be made.”
For example, Rider mentioned the sale of an 1991 MRAP on govdeals.com for $38,000. As Allen County’s vehicles are more than a decade newer without any significant wear and tear, the earning potential could equate to few hundred thousand dollars if all six vehicles are sold, Rider said.
While any member of the public can purchase the vehicles, Rider said they’ll be targeting the movie industry as potential buyers.
In general, the military vehicles seen in major productions are typically rented. If the Allen County vehicles are purchased by the right business, they could, in theory, be involved with more than a few summer blockbusters.
Under the leadership of former Sheriff Sam Crish, Rider said the sheriff’s office had considered using the military equipment as emergency rescue vehicles or potential parade vehicles, but the funds to wrap the rigs never came down the line.
Rider also asked commissioners to earmark the funds earned from the auction to pay for a new LED sign for the sheriff’s office. The electronic sign would be able to be programmed to rotate through different displays, or even advertisements, depending on the office’s needs.
“They’re a perfect complement to your vehicle fleet,” Commissioner Jay Begg said in jest. “How many bushels can they carry?”
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.