Council looks to further reduce vehicle numbers

Cllr Tim Brett wants Fife Council to look at making further reductions to its vehicle fleet ' the largest of any Scottish local authority.
Cllr Tim Brett wants Fife Council to look at making further reductions to its vehicle fleet ' the largest of any Scottish local authority.
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Fife Council has the largest fleet of vehicles of all local authorities in Scotland – and Councillor Tim Brett is asking whether it needs so many.

A Freedom of Information request by the Liberal Democrats has revealed Fife Council has 1684 vehicles.

That’s 36 per cent more than the second-placed authority, Highland Council, with 1235, and 40 per cent more than third-placed Glasgow City Council with 1202.

North Lanarkshire (1049) and West Lothian (1005) are the only other authorities with over 100o vehicles.

Cllr Brett, Fife’s Liberal Democrat group leader, said: ‘I appreciate Fife Council is the third largest local authority in Scotland next to Glasgow and Edinburgh which, although they have larger populations, do not have anything like the geographical area to cover.

“However, I have written to Dr Bob McLellan, the Council’s head of transportation, drawing his attention to this.

“I know that there have been some recent reductions in the number of vehicles that the Council uses, but I have asked if there is scope for looking further at this.

“Given the severe financial constraints the Council faces and the fact that the use of vehicles has been raised with me by constituents, I hope that a further look into this might result in additional savings being made by the Council.”

Fife Council’s 2014 transportation budgeting review, published last month, indicates efforts are already being made to reduce the fleet.

And a number of other measures, such as improvements in maintenance operations and keeping vehicles for a longer period, are also designed to to save money.

In a report on the transportation budget review, Brian Livingston, executive director of finance and corporate services, stated that fleet operations were the subject of a review by consultants FTA at the end of 2013, and they found that operational procedures and processes were generally sound and well managed.

He added: “The majority of vehicles across the wider Council have had their useful life extended from five years to seven years, thus reducing the annual capital cost of replacing vehicles.

“In addition, vehicle numbers have reduced by 14 per cent in the last three years – from 1920 in 2011 to the current 1684 – as services make savings on their fleet.

“Future savings will continue to reduce vehicle numbers across the Council.”