FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Just as consumers have felt the pain at the pump, so is the city of Fort Wayne.
On Tuesday night Fort Wayne City Council approved two contracts, one each for diesel and unleaded gasoline, to run the city’s fleet of vehicles next year.
Diesel fuel which cost the city $2.52 a gallon last year is priced to not exceed $4.50 a gallon, according to council agenda information. The total cost of the diesel contract with Ag Plus Inc. is $1,215,000 for 270,000 gallons.
After the meeting Councilman Geoff Paddock was pleased with the deal saying, “I feel very good about it.”
“Keep in mind that what we agreed tot tonight is well below a dollar less per gallon than what folks will be paying at the pump.”
Paddock noted that because of the volume the city purchased, they were able to lock in a good price for the duration of the contract, and that even if gasoline drops the contract will be favorable for the city.
Unleaded was negotiated at $2.97 a gallon, a jump over last year’s $1.89 per gallon. The total contract with Lassus Bros. Oil, Inc. is $2.245 million, the documents indicate, for a total annual usage of 756,000 gallons or about 63,000 gallons every month.
“The Fleet Department has negotiated a contract that appears to be a very good contract, well below market value,” Councilman Russ Jehl, 2nd district. “We’ve been paying close to $5 a gallon, the city of FW is going to be a shade below $3.”
Jehl blamed higher gas prices on inflation.
“We are in an inflationary period so the government ends up doing less with more,“ Jehl said.
The city does have a few EV vehicles and Jehl sees a possible and slow transition to more electric-operated vehicles owned by the city. Currently, downtown parking enforcement officers drive EV vehicles.
“Citilink (the public bus service) made a transition to a greener vehicle,” Jehl noted, “but in reality, 98% of the public drives gasoline powered vehicles. The next generation, you’ll see that transition.”
The contract is not bid out by the city, but rather it’s combined with the Fort Wayne Community Schools’ bid as another entity of the deal.