by Jonathan Weaver
Effective July 1, only three elected County officials and the County K-9 officer will be able to utilize take-home vehicles to respond to emergencies.
The new policy – unanimously adopted by Commissioners Pat Fabian, Jason Renshaw and George Skamai Tuesday – will allow District Attorney Scott Andreassi, Sheriff Bill Rupert, Coroner Brian Myers and Armstrong County Sheriff Deputy Theresa Gipson (and handler of K-9 Blak).
Commissioners and Director of Administration Jennifer Long counted more than 15 take-home vehicles that used to be available to other officials in the above-three departments and maintenance.
Commissioner Skamai said the 75 percent reduction correlates with some vehicles currently used by Armstrong County officials and staffers being sold online during the next three months.
In April, Executive Director of Administration Dan Lucovich said the total of 16 vehicles are from various departments in the county – including from agencies not located on Market Street in Kittanning, such as the Area Agency on Aging and the Armstrong County Jail in Rayburn Township.
The 16 vehicles range from a 1996 Ford E Van to a 2008 Pontiac Torrent, and will be sold in lots of five on Municbid during the next three months. Lucovich said, while some may have faulty equipment or high miles, some are just not needed anymore.
One of the three Chevy Trail Blazers up for sale was the commissioners’ office vehicle.
The list of vehicles is costing the County approximately $20,000 annually to maintain.
Commissioner Chair Pat Fabian said the sale is part of commissioners’ overall mission to save money and reduce the vehicle fleet.
“Every vehicle on here costs us insurance, parts and maintenance,” Fabian said. ‘What do we need’ is the big question we asked.”
In April, County officials first collected bids for five vehicles – including two Chevy Impalas and three Chevy Trailblazers – via Municibid and officials are currently taking bids until the end of the month for an additional Chevrolet Impala, a Chevy Silverado Truck and a Ford Expedition.
All vehicles are being sold “as is.”
Commissioner Renshaw thanked Commissioner Skamai for answering questions from County department leaders about the vehicle sales.
Commissioners consulted with Fleet Maintenance Manager Marty Coleman on the vehicle sales.
Any money collected during the sale will go into the County General Fund.