Police car purchase OK’d

FLINT TWP. — Township police officers are getting two new sets of wheels.

The township board on Monday night approved the purchase of two of two 2013 Dodge Charger police vehicles at a cost of $49,704 — $24,852 each.

They will replace two aging police cars currently in use, said Police Chief George Sippert. One has 184,899 miles on it and the other $131,519. Maintenance costs have also become an issue, he said.

The cost for both vehicles is already included in the 2012 budget, he said.

The Dodges were selected from several purchasing options available through the State of Michigan or Macomb County bid process, beating out Chevy Tahoe’s priced at $29,341 per unit; Chevrolet Caprices at $26,633 each; and Ford Sedan Interceptors priced at $26,275 each.

It was the second time this year that the board approved a new police car purchase. In January, the green light was given to buy four new police cars to replace older ones.

In that deal, the department found a deal to buy new 2011 Ford Crown Victorias which had been its vehicle of choice for 14 years. Ford has discontinued the model but police Lt. Tim Jones located a dealer with a stockpile of never-used cars selling at a better price than current year models.

Better still, they were identical to the Crown Vics in the departments existing fleet and therefore cost less to retrofit with police equipment.

Sippert said then that it was the end of an era for the department’s Crown Vic fleet and it would have to consider a different make or model for future purchases.

Trustee George Menoutes has made known his preference for Chevys. He was absent from Monday’s meeting due to recent knee surgery but Trustee Frank Kasle jokingly spoke on behalf of his friend.

Sippert pointed out the significant difference between the cost of Chevys and Chargers to pacify Menoutes.

“You get more vehicle for your dollar with the Dodge,’’ Sippert said.

Sippert did not say what would become of the two old cars being put out to pasture. In the past, the department has sold them at auction.

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