Employees driving City of Houston, Texas, fleet vehicles were unable to fill up at retail gas stations using their fuel cards for several hours last week.
A spokesperson for Mayor Sylvester Turner sent Government Fleet a statement, saying that shortly after 10:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 19, Fleet Management was notified that the city employees' Voyager fuel cards were being declined. When management reached out to Voyager, the company reported that due to the recent spike in fuel costs, the city's credit limit under the Voyager program had been exceeded, resulting in the cards being deactivated without notice.
Houston Fire and Police employees were advised to use one of the city's 67 fueling sites as needed while the issue with the cards was resolved, according go the statement. The following morning, the Fleet Management department was able to reactivate the cards, and the finance department paid the Voyager invoice. Fleet Management department employees were on standby to cover any fuel issues with emergency vehicles; the mayor's office reports it is unaware of any emergencies.
The Voyager cards are meant to be used as a backup by emergency response personnel when city refueling sites are not in close proximity.
The Houston City Council also passed a general appropriation ordinance in April that included nearly $4.6 million to cover unbudgeted fuel costs.