McArthur said the township estimated it would cost about $100,000 to purchase a generator big enough to power all of the municipal building's departments during a prolonged power outage such as that which occurred following Hurricane Sandy.
Instead, a contract was awarded by the Township Committee on Tuesday night to Manor II Electric Inc. of Holmdel to provide a standby generator for $87,800.
The cost also was reduced since the township was able to rely on a local electrician to perform electrical upgrades and the department of Public Works to prepare the wiring for installation and to build a bad for the new generator, McArthur said.
The township's DPW also will move the old generator — inadequate for the municipal building — further down South Finley Avenue to the much smaller health department building, he added.
"When all is said and done, we probably will be able to return about $80,000 back to [the] capital fund," McArthur said.
A consultant was hired for a fee of about $16,000 to prepare the specialized bid for the generator for the historic building, McArthur said.
At the same time, about $300,000 worth of upgrades will be made over the next few months to modernize and improve electronics, communications and other equipment in a combined courtroom and meeting room at the town hall.
Officials have said that the room could be used as a command post and warming center in case of another power blackout such as the one that followed Sandy last Ocober and lingered on into two weeks in some sections of the township.
For example, additional electronic outlets would give residents a place to recharge appliances, according to the plans.
During the renovations, Township Committee, Planning Board and Board of Adjustment meetings will be relocated during September and October to the Bernards Township Library at 32 S. Maple Ave. Additional meetings may be moved if needed, officials have said.
The municipal court also will be moved to Bedminster Township during those months, with court to be scheduled on Mondays instead of Tuesdays. The Bedminster Township Committee already has approved an agreement with its neighbor.