The ATM Guy to operate machines at TRAC in Pasco

Geoff Folsom, Tri-City HeraldMarch 26, 2014 

Franklin County commissioners agreed Wednesday to hire a private company to operate automated teller machines at the TRAC facility in northwest Pasco.

The ATM Guy of Renton will collect a fee of $2.50 on every ATM transaction at TRAC. The county will receive 40 percent of that, or $1.

A recent state auditor's report faulted TRAC for its oversight of its three machines. The same county employee requests and receives cash for the ATMs, fills the ATMs and reconciles the cash to bank statements and the accounting system.

The ATM Guy was one of two vendors to respond to the county's request for proposals. An official vote on the hire is expected next week.

The company has local people who can work on the machines, Koch said.

The contract calls for The ATM Guy to use TRAC's existing ATMs, though one of its three machines is likely to be retired, TRAC general manager Troy Woody said.

Woody was asked if the move meant less work for his staff.

"It's one less thing to do, but we've added a few extra things to do," he said.

County Administrator Fred Bowen said he plans to ask for additional staff at TRAC. Commissioner Brad Peck said that might not be a good idea.

"I guess I'll wait and hear the merits of that discussion, but it sounds like a hard sell," Peck said.

Commissioner Rick Miller then suggested that operations of the TRAC recreational vehicle park be moved from TRAC management to another county department, which Peck said he'd been suggesting for years.

It makes sense to separate the two, since the county owns the RV park by itself and shares ownership of TRAC with the city of Pasco, Miller said.

Miller stopped short of asking for a private operator for the RV park, which Peck has suggested.

The county has been working to correct problems at TRAC and elsewhere, Miller said, adding that it had been seeking ATM vendors since before the auditor's report was issued earlier this month.

"We've been scrutinized," he said. "If you go to any county or any business, you're going to find these little processes that aren't correct, and we're trying to correct them."

In other business Wednesday, commissioners approved a new 100-foot-tall wireless internet tower on Jackass Mountain near the intersection of Fir and Hope Valley roads southwest of Eltopia.

The tower will be located next to an existing 200-foot-tall Verizon tower, but planning and building director Jerrod MacPherson said Verizon wanted too much money for internet tower owner Desert Winds Wireless to place its signal on the Verizon tower.

The Desert Winds tower is being relocated from a site near Connell where the company's lease had expired.

-- Geoff Folsom: 509-582-1543; gfolsom@tricityherald.com; Twitter: @GeoffFolsom

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