Landrum approves grant terms for two new police cars

Published 8:43 am Thursday, July 7, 2011

Landrum officials June 28 accepted the terms of a grant agreement under the USDA’s rural development category.
Pending final approval, USDA representative Lara Ashy said $15,720 has been set aside for Landrum’s use in purchasing two new vehicles for its police fleet.
Mayor Bobby Briggs told Ashy the city appreciated the organization’s assistance.
“I want to thank ya’ll for all your help because these are challenging times for small towns,” Briggs said.
Landrum plans to use the money to purchase two new police cars over the course of two years. The city will have to contribute an estimated $29,200 over the next two budgets, for a total of $44,920, including the grant.
City Administrator Steve Wolochowicz said the city is currently working through a lengthy paperwork process but he said he believes all the work will be worth what the city gains.
“There’s really not many options out there for police vehicles,” Wolochowicz said. “In the past what we’ve tried to do each budget year was include funds for at least one police car to replace whichever had the most mileage.”
Wolochowicz said the council had been reluctant to purchase a vehicle at all this year because of the tough economic climate. But, he said maintenance costs steadily increase as vehicles in the fleet age, which costs the city money as well. Landrum’s police department currently maintains 10 vehicles.
Wolochowicz said he first discovered the availability of grant money through the USDA’s community facilities program after reading that the city of Manning, S.C., had purchased police cars with the same type of grant. Wolochowicz quickly contacted the agency in Spartanburg to find out if something similar could work in Landrum.
Landrum was awarded 35 percent of the total estimated cost for the two cars based on the median income of the city’s households.

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