Town’s new vehicle policy showing savings, leaders say

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When the town of Mount Olive switched the way it purchases vehicles nearly a year ago the idea was to realize a big savings over a period of time. But town leaders say the numbers already reflect that.

At-Large Town Commissioner Steve Wiggins provided the numbers that show a net savings of $34,164 so far.

The new Commercial Fleet Lease program was approved by the town board last January.

“The numbers are impressive,” Wiggins said.

The total annual lease expense for the first 10 months has been $112,836 ($9,403 monthly).

Revenue from the sale of surplus vehicles totaled $67,000.

The estimated savings in maintenance totaled $80,000.

That all resulted in a net lease expense of $34,164, or the total net savings for the town in the first year, according to Wiggins.

And, the town has 19 brand new 2019 vehicles in its fleet of 45.

Town Manager Charles Brown said all members of the board had recently requested numbers on how the program was progressing.

He went on to explain that Commissioner Barbara Kornegay brought the idea before the board more than a year ago.

“We made some phone calls to municipalities who were using this program, and they were all extremely well-pleased with the results,” Brown said.

A closer review of the program indicated it would save the town somewhere in the neighborhood of $300,000 after 10 years, he said.

The town board asked for a recent update on how the program is working and the numbers tell the story, he added.

The big number is the savings in maintenance, Brown said.

“Before, we were buying surplus vehicles that were pretty much worn out when we got them, and it resulted in a tremendous amount of maintenance costs. The new vehicles we are getting now there is none-to-very-little maintenance costs,” Brown explained.

He said the new program gives the town new vehicles to drive and also improves morale. Employees love the new vehicles.

Involvement in the fleet management program was well worth it, Brown said.

“It was not a matter of getting everyone a new vehicle, but a matter of saving the town a substantial amount of money. I compliment our commissioners for this program. They thought it through, studied it, and put it into play. Now, it is working,” Brown concluded.

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