SAN BERNARDINO, CA - San Bernardino County Supervisor Neil Derry's proposal to eliminate take-home vehicles for 58 district attorney investigators has been met with strong opposition by investigators at the D.A.'s office, reported the San Bernardino Sun.

The Board of Supervisors recently approved a $144,000 audit with Maryland-based Mercury Associates, Inc. to determine if the county needs to reduce or consolidate operations of its fleet of about 5,000 vehicles, including the District Attorney's Office.

Derry said take-home vehicles are not a necessity for district attorney investigators, who are neither first responders to emergencies nor on-call. He expects a savings to the county of at least $1 million, possibly even more, by eliminating the take-home vehicles for investigators.

Mike Donovan, assistant chief investigator for the District Attorney's Office, said such a move would result in 10-percent less productivity, more overtime, and about $90,000 in county money to build armories to house special equipment investigators keep in their vehicles such as guns, police radios, and bulletproof vests. In addition, there isn't adequate space for investigators to park their cars in San Bernardino or any of the other 11 office locations spread across the county, Donovan said.

Derry said the audit will ultimately determine what cuts or consolidations need to be made in the various county departments, including the District Attorney's Office, reported the Sun.