Police revamp fleet; city to add three cars

The city expects to have about $75,000 in grant funds to help pay the lease.
SHARON, Pa. -- The city is replacing its police car fleet and adding three cars for its code enforcement office under a lease-purchase arrangement approved by city council Thursday.
It will cost the city $197,148 over three years to get 13 new vehicles from PNC Bank/Laurel Capital Corp. of New Jersey.
The cars are six-cylinder Chevrolet Impalas, said Police Chief Raymond Greene.
All council members weren't comfortable with leasing that many cars at one time, however.
"We don't have this kind of money," said Councilwoman Chris Outrakis, who voted against the plan. It passed 4-1.
The city will use some state and federal grant funds to help make the payments, said Michael Gasparich, city finance director.
Financing: He said Sharon already has secured a $20,000 U.S. Justice Department grant and a $30,000 state grant and expects to set a second state grant of $25,000, which can be used for the lease payments.
The city can buy the cars for $1 apiece at the end of the lease, he said.
Greene said the city normally buys two police cars a year at a cost of $50,000.
It will be able to get an entirely new fleet of vehicles at one time for essentially the same cost, he said.
Those cars would still have some value at the end of three years and could be traded in for new vehicles, he said.
Gasparich said the new cars should cut vehicle maintenance costs and all have full, three-year warranties.
Greene said the city will trade in 10 of its old police cars and keep an 11th as a backup.

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