The county will also spend another $32,000 on a 2020 Police Ford Explorer, and be paid for from the jail commissary trust fund, according to county documents.
“This purchase is necessary due to replacing aging fleet vehicles,” county documents say.
The new cars are expected to arrive at the sheriff’s office in June or July, Burchett said.
Deputies are constantly on the roadway and having reliable vehicles can mean life or death in the case of an emergency, the sheriff said.
“The reason we try to get new cruisers continuously every year is because the deputies on the road patrol drive these cars eight to 16 hours a day,” Burchett said. “You have to be in safe vehicles to do that and it’s not safe if they have 180,000 miles on them.”
Clark County Commission President Melanie Flax Wilt said making sure the deputies have what they need to protect residents is important.
“It’s important that we continuously keep vehicles and assets up to date so we have a rolling system of vehicles so that we have safe and efficient vehicles on the road,” she said. “Public safety is one of the biggest priorities that we have. It’s one of our largest budgetary expenses because keeping the public safe and keeping our families safe and out of harm’s way is always the foremost priority.”
Burchett said deputies are constantly responding to emergency situations and use the vehicles to get to them.
EXTRA: Clark County Common Pleas Court cases
“They get calls and they have to run red lights and use their sirens,” Burchett said. “I don’t want my people in unsafe situations.”
The cars that get replaced are about four or five years old, Burchett said, and are sold to help reimburse the general fund.
Burchett said the Ford Explorer purchased for the jail is a new idea. Currently, the jail employees drive large vans when they need to transport inmates. But, Burchett said many times they are only transporting one or two at a time.
With a smaller vehicle, the office can be more efficient with gas expenses, she said.
“The reason we did that we wanted to save some money,” Burchett said. “A Ford Explorer for the jail is a way they can cut down on gas.”
The Clark County Sheriff’s Office fleet is strong, Burchett said, but the office could always use more resources when they become available.
“We need more cars but we take what we can get and try to be satisfied.”
Facts and Figures
$326,152: Money spent on buying new sheriff vehicle
9: Road Patrol vehicles being purchased by the Clark County Sheriff’s Office
1: Clark County jail vehicle being purchased
The new vehicles are expected to arrive at the Clark County Sheriff’s Office in June or July
The Springfield News-Sun provides the best coverage of Clark County public safety including stories about upgrades in the sheriff’s equipment, crime and court cases.