<!– @page { size: 8.5in 11in; margin: 0.79in } P { margin-bottom: 0.08in } –> Policy changes to save fuel, funds used for government vehicles

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Mayor Karl Dean today announced significant changes to the fleet policies of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County as a comprehensive effort to offset the impact of rising fuel costs.

Dean has called on department heads to reduce the total number of fleet vehicles by 10 percent and significantly reduce the number of vehicles taken home by employees. Changes to vehicle replacement practices and a no-idling policy have also been implemented to increase fuel efficiency across Metro.

“Everyone – from businesses to families – is looking for ways to cut back on fuel use and government should not be the exception,” Dean said. “We’re already in tight financial times. When you add in the increasing cost of fuel and growing concerns about the environment, it’s clear these changes need to be made.”

Metro department heads have been asked to conduct a thorough review of the vehicles used in the performance of their department’s duties and reduce the total fleet size by 400 vehicles. This reduction is expected to reduce fleet operating expenses by over $1.4 million a year.

Over 900 vehicles are assigned to individuals as 24-hour “take-home” vehicles. The mayor is requiring department heads to review employee assignments to validate the need for a take-home vehicle and unless there is strong justification the vehicles should be parked.

To date, the Fire Department, the Office of Emergency Management and the Water Services Department have voluntarily reduced the number of assigned take home vehicles and have identified vehicles and equipment to remove from their departments.

Dean has also called for a change in the vehicle replacement policy, where opportunities to purchase compact or sub-compact, fuel efficient vehicles in lieu of full- or mid-sized vehicles will be taken, as well as consideration for use of hybrid vehicles.

In addition, Dean has directed Metro employees driving fleet vehicles not to allow engines to idle unless it impedes their ability to perform their job duties or in the case of emergency situations. This practice will not only save on fuel costs but will reduce air pollution and reduce the wear and tear on vehicles and equipment.