Archived Story

County: Purchase of vehicles cheaper than paying mileage

Published 10:57am Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Otter Tail County Board on Tuesday approved a request from the budget committee and Community Services Director John Dinsmore for the purchase of four new vehicles for county use.

Dinsmore said six vehicles will be retired, reassigned or auctioned off once the four new vehicles are purchased, leaving the county with a fleet of 14 vehicles.

There is no estimated cost for the new vehicles.

After hearing from Dinsmore at a budget committee meeting last week, Commissioner Wayne Johnson said he was in full support of the purchases.

“It’s probably overdue more than just due,” Johnson said.

Many of the county’s vehicles have more than 150,000 miles on them. Dinsmore said drivers have been hesitant to use these older vehicles because they are far less reliable than newer ones.

Dinsmore said using county vehicles is still cheaper than having workers use their personal vehicles and reimbursing them for the miles. The IRS mileage rate for personal car reimbursement is $0.56, while the mileage rate for managing a fleet of cars is $0.33.

Since 2008, the county’s miles per fleet has been reduced from 307,837 to 247,886 in 2012.

The county is also projecting another decrease in mileage this year, down to 219,435 miles.

During the budget meeting last week, Dinsmore said he anticipates a mileage increase if the county were to add the four new vehicles.

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