Columbus to finance 3 new vehicles

Published 9:49 pm Sunday, August 25, 2019

Police department phasing out Dodge Chargers

COLUMBUS—The Town of Columbus agreed to finance three new vehicles last week, with the town attempting to phase out its Dodge Chargers in the police fleet because of the high cost of maintenance. 

Columbus Town Council agreed to finance $118,863 for a public works department truck and two police vehicles through BB&T at an interest rate of 2.58 percent over four years. The town solicited bids with BB&T offering the lowest interest rate from three banks.

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The first payment will not be due until Aug. 5, 2020, which is after the start of the town’s next fiscal year. 

Councilman Mark Phillips at first suggested the town sell the old pickup truck for the public works department while it still has some value. The old truck is a 2004 model. 

Columbus Mayor Eric McIntyre said the town may also consider keeping the old truck in case employees need a backup. 

McIntyre asked how many Dodge Chargers the police department has left. 

Columbus Police Chief Scott Hamby said the department has two Chargers ready to sell now on Following selling those two, the department will have three Chargers left. The others, Hamby said, have 50-60,000 miles on them. 

“Mileage-wise, they are still low, but maintenance wise, they are still high,” Hamby said. 

The town will purchase a 2019 F-150 and a 2020 Ford Explorer for the police department. Hamby said they would have purchased a 2019 Explorer but the company was already sold out. 

Hamby said something fell out of one of the Chargers just the other day and it cost $900 to get it fixed. 

“We are not sad to see them go,” said Hamby.