RIDGEFIELD — Low bid, or shop local? The selectmen went local.

Waiving a policy to accept the lowest bid, the Board of Selectmen chose to give Ridgefield-based Pamby Motors the contract on a three-year lease of an unmarked police car.

The cost to taxpayers? An extra $185 on the more than $16,000 lease.

“Especially at a time like this, we have to support our local businesses,” Selectman Bob Hebert said.

In a public discussion during Wednesday’s meeting, the selectmen voted unanimously to pay $16,565 for a three-year lease of 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee from Pamby Motors, despite the low bid being $16,380 from Acme Auto Leasing LLC of North Haven.

“A difference of $185,” First Selectman Rudy Marconi said.

Town policy, he said, is to put purchases out to bid and go with the low bidder.

“Unless the board feels, in recognition of a major taxpayer in town, we should reconsider,” Marconi said.

The board felt that way — at least when the bids were so close.

“It’s absolutely worth spending,” Selectwoman Maureen Kozlark said of the extra $185. “We have to award to Pamby’s.”

“Not only do we have to support our local businesses, I’m on my fifth car from Pamby’s,” Selectman Sean Connelly said.

In addition to supporting a local business and substantial town taxpayer amid the difficult economic situation prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, board members said getting maintenance and service from a dealership in town would be more practical than getting if from a dealer in North Haven.