Governments are renting equipment to ensure that critical projects are completed. In the last three months, more than 30 local and state government agencies in 18 states have rented equipment, according to BidNet, the Albany, N.Y.-based government bid reporting service.

Some of the items rented by governments, according to BidNet, are: construction and heavy equipment, fuel dispensers, trenching and boring gear, waste resource management apparatus, utility equipment, street paving gear, sewage equipment, pumps, generators, emergency wastewater treatment plant gear, equipment for special events, street pavers, snow removal gear, pothole patchers with onboard global positioning systems, and small construction equipment.

BidNet tracks government buying and planning at the local, state and federal level; it delivers content-rich actionable data and government business intelligence to clients across the U.S.

The Government Solutions business of Greenwich, Conn.-based United Rentals has been awarded state purchasing contracts in Texas and Massachusetts. In the Bay State, the company won a sole-source equipment rental contract through 2012, with an optional extension. The contract is available for use by all executive agencies in the Commonwealth.

In Texas, the company has won a shared contract for equipment rentals provided through 2012 and administered by the Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC, HGACBuy), a nationwide purchasing cooperative available to all units of local government and non-profits. The renewable H-GAC contract expands the presence of United Rentals Government Solutions in Texas, where the company has held a Texas Multiple Award Schedule (TXMAS) contract since 2007.

"In recent months, government agencies across the country have been increasingly relying on our Government Solutions expertise to assist them in their implementation of projects related to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act," says Robert Caudle, director of Government Solutions for United Rentals.

The company offers 3,000 classes of construction and industrial equipment for rent, and provides support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, other federal entities, and all branches of the military. United Rentals has 580 locations in the United States and Canada.

Scottsdale, Ariz.-based RSC Equipment Rental, likewise, has been awarded a shared nationwide government purchasing contract for equipment rentals through 2012 with HGACBuy. "Government agencies recognize the convenience and savings associated with equipment rental," says Nick Kahler, government sales and GSA Manager for RSC. The company has 445 locations nationwide and a dedicated government sales team.