Government Fleet Top News

Public Agencies in Calif. Feel the Sting of Soaring Fuel Prices

May 23, 2007

THOUSAND OAKS, CA – Keeping vehicle fleet fueled has cities throughout Ventura County, Southern Calif., digging deeper into their budgets to keep up with skyrocketing gas prices, according to the Web site

Thousand Oaks budgeted $460,000 for fuel this fiscal year and has spent on average $51,425 a month for it. With the ever-increasing cost of gas, city officials expect to exceed the budget by $165,000.Oxnard needs close to $300,000 to cover the shortage in this year’s budget and to increase the next budget. Ventura has gone over its fuel budget for the past two years and has had to move money from other maintenance funds to cover the gaps.

Simi Valley has had to increase its fuel budget each year and in Santa Paula, city officials have aimed high when estimating their annual cost for fuel.

Cities are also looking to alternative-fuel vehicles to lower fuel costs and reduce emissions.

In Ventura, most of the city’s sedans are being replaced with hybrids. When vehicles come up for replacement, officials look at whether an alternative-fuel vehicle would fill the need. Ventura is also moving to biodiesel fuel, with the intention of having all of its diesel-powered vehicles, including firetrucks, converted to run on a mixture of 20-percent biodiesel and 80 percent ultra-low sulphur diesel.

Santa Paula is looking at converting its trash trucks to biodiesel fuel. As for the rest of the city’s fleet, the cost of investing in alternative-fuel vehicles is too much at this time.

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