Fuel Management

Monterey County Reviewing Car ‘Perk’

November 19, 2009

SALINAS, CA - Monterey County is revisiting the county vehicle use policy as a result of some leasing issues, according to The Salinas Californian.

County policy allows some high-level managers to use county-provided cars for their commutes or receive a $375 monthly transportation stipend. About six high-level managers have county cars that they can use for daily commutes, county spokeswoman Maia Carroll told the Californian.

Supervisors asked to revisit the policy as they approved purchasing a $27,422 Ford Crown Victoria for Emergency Medical Services Director Tom Lynch on Nov. 17.

Lynch uses the car, which was already leased for his use, for his more than 200-mile round trip commute to San Luis Obispo County. Health Department Director Len Foster told supervisors that Lynch needs the car because he responds to the county in emergencies as part of his job.

The matter would not have come before the Board of Supervisors if not for an issue with the leasing process. Normally, county cars are purchased through the fleet department.

Because the EMS department hadn't participated in the county's leasing program in the past, EMS officials worked with the purchasing department to lease the car using operating funds.

After the county's Office of Auditor-Controller reviewed the lease, it asked EMS officials to classify the car as a capital, or long-term, purchase. That change required board approval of the purchase.

Supervisors voted 4-to-1 to approve the lease and revisit the policy, according to the Californian.

 

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