Leander City Council approves budget for 22 fleet vehicles


The City of Leander will soon add 22 vehicles to its fleet after approval of the purchases totaling nearly $800,000 at the city’s Oct. 4 council meeting.  

The purchase will include seven vehicles for the police department, two for the fire department, three for the streets division, three for the water department, five for the parks department, one for utility billing and one for general services. About half of the vehicles are replacements for older models. 

“We issued this bid in August of this year,” said Leander’s General Services Manager and Purchasing Agent Joy Simonton during the Oct. 4 meeting. “We issue this bid every year about this time as a result of (the council’s) budgeting process and approved staff positions that need vehicles.” 

The Leander City Council unanimously approved $798,703.92 requested, and Public Information Officer Mike Neu said that city staff found getting volume prices to be more affordable. 

“We received good proposals on these vehicles to save money and meet the city’s need for service,” Neu explained. “About half of the vehicles are replacing models that are at the end of life. The other half will meet the needs of growth, especially within the police, fire and parks departments.”

Among the vehicles being purchased for the police department, two will be new patrol units, another two new vehicles will be for Criminal Investigation Department detectives and three of the new vehicles will replace existing police cruisers.

“A police vehicle is an officer’s ‘office’ and carries the equipment they will need to do their job,” said Leander Police Chief Greg Minton. “They must have everything with them that they will need to respond to emergencies when they are out on patrol or when responding to criminal investigations. Their ‘offices’ are just on four wheels and equipped with Motorola 800 MHz radios, speed detection equipment, emergency lighting, mobile data terminals and other equipment our officers need to do their job. We recognize and appreciate that City Council cares enough to equip our officers with the very best to provide police services.”

Fire Chief Bill Gardner said the two fire vehicles will help the department to perform efficiently.

“This was for two (pickup trucks) for the fire department,” he said. “One was part of the fleet replacement program, and the other was for a new position that will help provide oversight and support to the emergency operations division.” 

Public Works Director Pat Womack said that his department will receive 7 vehicles, including 4 replacement crew trucks, a new crew truck, a new supervisor pickup truck, and a replacement dump truck.

“Two of the replacement trucks will replace existing 2010 model Water/WW trucks with approximately 120,000 miles,” Womack explained. “A new crew truck, identical to the previous two, is associated with an additional new third Water Distribution/WW collection repair crew. Another crew truck will replace a 2008 model crew truck in the Street Department, the last crew truck replaces a 1997 model mechanic’s truck. The new pickup truck is a street supervisor’s truck, a new position approved in the FY19 budget process. The new dump truck, a larger freightliner model along with an in-bed sand spreader for icy roads will replace a 2007 model dump truck with a tailgate sand spreader that requires the bed to be tilted up, which is risky near traffic signals. The new dump truck has nearly double the haul capacity of the one it’s replacing.”

The vehicles, which should be delivered next year, will be provided by the following vendors: Lake Country Chevy, Silsbee Ford, Caldwell Country Chevy, Randall Reed’s Prestige Ford and Grapevine Dodge, Chrysler and Jeep.