Lexington's mayor Friday issued an executive order that will reinstate a program allowing personal use of police cruisers. The action by Mayor Jim Gray comes after the police union suspended a vote on a proposed 50 dollar monthly fee for personal use of vehicles.
The mayor says the 50 dollar suggestion came when projected cost savings didn't materialize saying, "Under the present model, under the present policy, is saving 280 thousand dollars a year. Now, that was estimated at 800 thousand a year during the negotiations, so it has not met the expectation of the negotiations which is one reason why we considered a revision to it.”
Friday's order allows use of police cars for personal reasons on a temporary basis in response to a recent surge in violent crime. Gray says he realizes there is additional cost for this off-duty service, "We want to provide as much of a police presence, as much of a law enforcement presence as we can in our city and we also want to be responsible to our taxpayers for the cost of all our services.”
The personal use benefit requires officers to be armed and have their radios on when using cruisers on personal errands.