COLUMBIA, MO - The City of Columbia, Mo., is hoping for slight increase in fleet budget for the upcoming year for staff additions. The requested fleet budget for FY 2011, subject to a hearing and vote by City Council, is $7.11 million, up slightly from this year's budget of $7.06 million, according to the Columbia Missourian.

The budget calls for adding a mechanic, a parts clerk, and a data entry person. This would allow more internal work, reducing the amount of work outsourced to commercial garages.

According to fleet manager Eric Evans, and there is always a backlog of vehicles waiting to come into the shop.

Evans also said the city is exploring switching vehicles to compressed natural gas (CNG) in an effort to cut costs, according to the newspaper.