Augusta to study taking over fleet maintenance

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AUGUSTA,Ga (WJBF) It would be the end of a great partnership as Augusta considers no longer turning over maintenance of the city fleet to a private company.

“It’s our shop our equipment everything belongs to the city but we’re paying a contractor that doesn’t make good sense to me,” says Commissioner Marion Williams.

When you take your car to the shop you get a bill so does Augusta the city paid the private company a little more than three million dollars last year.

With budgets tight city leaders want to know if it would be cheaper bringing maintenance in house.

“Savannah has done it saved millions of dollars or saved money I would like to explore that opportunity as well,” says Commissioner Wayne Guilfoyle.

Commissioners next week are expected to approve a one year deal with the company to give the city officials time to study taking over the shop.

“That’s something you have to look at for a period of time and really examine your data to determine if it’s cost effective or not,” says Commissioner Dennis Williams.

“I would have  to look first of all  the numbers more on that I don’t want us to continue to grow our government if we can afford to we got to be careful with that sometimes it is better to out-source  something,” says Mayor Pro-Tem Mary Davis.

But Commissioner Marion Williams says having a private contractor running the shop is something the city should not afford.

“They’re  doing it because they’re making money so if they can do it they hire a man put him to work why can’t we hire somebody and save a million and a half dollars,” says Williams.

Augusta owns the maintenance shop building and a majority of the equipment but the city doesn’t own the inventory and the workers are not city employee, so buying parts and paying salaries and benefits   would be city expenses,

Commissioners want a final recommendation on whether to take the shop in house back by June.

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