Government Fleet Top News

City of Louisville Washes Vehicle Fleet

May 18, 2004

LOUISVILLE, KY – Two thousand five hundred city-owned cars and trucks, including police cruisers and SUVs, zoo vans and trucks, city garbage trucks, and even the bookmobile from the library were recently washed clean, according to WHAS TV. And taxpayers, who are split on the perk, pay for each and every power wash and car wash -- in some cases, several times a month. Since 2002, the city has paid out nearly $200,000 to private companies to wash the fleet of cars and trucks. Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson's car is washed often. According to records, nine times last October, seven times last August. Generally, the mayor's car is cleaned five or six times in a month. No policy was found for all of metro government when it comes to how often city employees can take their city-owned vehicles to be washed. The police department's bill makes up half of what the city pays for car washes, but only the police department has a policy and sets a limit on officers: twice a month. However, records show that can be expanded, based on need. The city has hired three car wash companies to do the job including Classie, the Greatest Car Wash, and Carby's on Dixie, which charge between $7-$8 per car, a fee that's about $2 below what the public is charged. Curtis Power Clean charges $6.35 for everything it sprays off and has received $71,000 from the city since 2002. But so far, records show Classie on Broadway receives the bulk of the business, getting nearly $80,000 since 2002. The mayor says he leaves the number of car washes up to the department heads to determine what's excessive. Each of the car wash and power wash companies went through a new bidding process with the newly merged government just recently to land the business. No company from the East End bid, so geographically, drivers of police cruisers and other cars from all over the county must drive downtown or to Dixie Highway to get their cars washed.

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