Group Purchasing

Cities, counties and fire protection districts continue to struggle with both budgets and the ability to provide timely and safe fire/ EMS response. Apparatus are often large capital investments that range from $100,000 to over $1,000,000 per vehicle. However, the line item purchase order cost of the apparatus is only one element of consideration in the total cost of the truck during its in-service life. Other considerations include the staffing, cost of future replacements, maintenance, spare parts, training, as well as the administrative costs of acquisition.
KME has worked closely with departments nationwide to explore ways to minimize the acquisition costs of apparatus as well as the total cost of ownership. All of the strategies focused on several important points including:
  • Assurance of competitive pricing and audit accountability
  • Established pricing guidelines for future purchases
  • Minimizing administrative costs and product price increases
  • Minimizing training, service and parts inventory expense
  • Allowing for competitive bids at any time should they choose to do so

Some of the options KME can provide include:

Long Term Purchase Agreement
Cooperative Purchasing Contract
Add/Tag-On to Public Bids

Below is some information about cooperative purchasing contracts.

Contact your KME Sales Rep for details on these contracts or for tag-on’s to other existing bids for big savings!


  • The Defense Logistics Agency supplies the nation’s military services and several civilian agencies with the critical resources they need to accomplish their worldwide missions. DLA provides wide-ranging logistical support for peacetime and wartime operations, as well as emergency preparedness and humanitarian missions.

    DLA is headquartered just outside Washington, D.C., and has a staff of about 21,000 civilian and military employees working in 48 states and 28 foreign countries. In fiscal year 2005, DLA provided almost $32 billion in goods and services to all military services worldwide, including significant support to both Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
  • The US General Services Administration is a reliable and proven source for thousands of Federal purchasers worldwide. GSA Advantage offers the most comprehensive selection of approved products and services from GSA/VA Schedules as well as all GSA Global Supply products.  With over 10 million state-of-the-art high-quality commercial products and services at your fingertips, GSA Advantage provides convenient one-stop shopping source to meet all your procurement needs.
  • HGACBuy is a "Government-to-Government" procurement service available nationwide. Governmental entities have been procuring products and services through HGACBuy for over 30 years. As a unit of local government assisting other local governments, HGACBuy strives to make the governmental procurement process more efficient by establishing competitively priced contracts for goods and services, and providing the customer service necessary to help its members achieve their procurement goals. All contracts available to members of HGACBuy have been awarded by virtue of a public competitive procurement process compliant with state statutes.
  • The BuyBoard National Purchasing Cooperative streamlines the purchasing process for schools, municipalities, and other public entities across the nation—and membership is free!
    Contracts and vendors awarded through BuyBoard have been competitively procured, so members automatically have compliance with local and state procurement requirements and a documented audit trail. Transparency in the procurement process is treated with a high degree of focus and is of paramount importance. All vendors are treated on equal terms and are on the same plane of competition.
    The BuyBoard National Purchasing Cooperative is governed by an eight-member board of directors composed of participating members. The board’s only function is to govern the Cooperative and award all contracts directly with no delegation of authority to staff.
    Support of public education and local governments
    BuyBoard was created to support and serve public schools, municipalities, counties, and all types of local government agencies and nonprofits. That support and service is evidenced in the list of organizations that sponsor the program and in turn support their respective membership.
    • You must be a member to access contracts
    • Membership is free and without any purchasing obligations
    • Departments save time and money on the procurement process


  • The Metropolitan Area Planning Council has a program partnership with the Fire Chiefs Association of Massachusetts (FCAM) that allows for a simplified purchase process for a variety of pumpers at competitive pricing. By employing the state's collective purchasing statutes (Massachusetts General Law Chapter 30B and Massachusetts General Law Chapter 7, Section 22B) on behalf of FCAM, MAPC is bringing the price and convenience advantages of volume purchasing to the local level, and helping local staff save time and money by not having to engage in the complex municipal procurement process themselves. Savings occur in two ways:
    • Time savings: those who would normally be entangled in the Massachusetts public procurement process can be freed to address more immediate local needs.
    • Dollar savings: aggressive competition among providers for large contracts results in high volume discounts.
  • The Florida Sheriffs Association in conjunction with Fire Chiefs’ Association and the Association of Counties administer a bid for 15 different types of emergency apparatus. Approved apparatus suppliers offer outstanding pricing to Florida fire departments in a simple, no hassle manner that complies with state bidding guidelines.
  • LaMAS is a program allowed by the Louisiana Legislature to establish Louisiana contracts based on pricing negotiated by the Federal Government in their General Service Administration (GSA) contracts.
    The program allows all fire departments to purchase apparatus more easily and cost effectively. Fire Departments and municipalities can procure trucks directly off the contract and take advantage of the volume discounts offered.

  • The State Fire Marshal’s office has worked with the State of Ohio Department of Administrative Services to promote and make available special contracts and pricing for items that Fire Departments need to purchase without a requirement to write specifications and go through the lengthy bidding process. The ability to purchase items listed with DAS allows not only for money savings but also saving time for Ohio’s fire service.
  • COSTARS is a new approach to the Cooperative Purchasing Program and is a great program for any Pennsylvania city, municipality or fire department. There are over 4,200 Local Public Procurement Units taking advantage of existing Commonwealth contracts. COSTARS' goal is to provide better contracts with competitive pricing, while increasing participation of eligible participants.