Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Santa Fe rain barrel deal is dead.(Business Outlook)

Byline: John T. Huddy Journal Staff Writer

SANTA FE -- After a backlash from local vendors who felt slighted by a city decision to spend over $90,000 on rain barrels from a Vermont company, the City Council voted last week to go back to the drawing board.

The council's 5-3 vote to nix its $98,000 plan to buy 1,250 75-gallon barrels from Home & Garden Innovations Inc. reverses its initial approval of the proposal, which came at a June 11 meeting.

Local vendors had immediately complained, claiming that their bids -- $20,000 to $40,000 cheaper in some cases -- had not been seriously considered.

One local vendor, John Nash, filed a protest against the city's decision June 18, claiming it violated the state Constitution's "anti-donation" clause that bars cities from making "donations to or aid in favor of any person. …

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