Fleet Policies and Procedures

Policy Statement

Lamar State College Orange vehicles are available under certain circumstances for use in support of the college mission of education. College vehicles are classified as either pool or service vehicles. The use and purpose of the vehicle determine the classification.

A. Facility and Staff Pool Vehicles

Facility and staff vehicles are used for college- related trips off campus in state and out of state with proper authorization.

A pool vehicle is one that is available for a short-term trip from a Lamar State College Orange central location at 410 Front St., Orange, Texas usually on a trip-by-trip basis. A logbook is provided to enter all mileage, gas, oil, and any minor repairs. A credit card is provided for these expenses. All major repairs will require contacting the fleet manager by phone for instructions on how to proceed with repairs, etc.

If a pool vehicle is not available and the driver is authorized to use his/her own personal vehicle, reimbursement for business miles will be made according to state rates.

B. Service Vehicles

Usually service vehicles are used on-campus. These vehicles are assigned to a specific department that has the following responsibilities:

  1. Controlling the use of the vehicle
  2. Management of the vehicle, including proper maintenance, servicing, replacing when necessary, and meeting all state and federal guidelines.
  3. Budgeting for vehicle support, including operating costs, non-insured repairs and maintenance, and funding for replacement.

These vehicles are to be used for official college business only. They cannot be loaned for personal use.

When a vehicle is not in use, it is to be parked in a secured parking area that is available to the controlling administrative unit.

The fleet manager will be responsible for performing services, monitoring maintenance schedules, licensing, inspecting, and replacing.

These vehicles will be marked with the Lamar State College – Orange logo with the word “TEXAS” above the logo.

These vehicles will be licensed/registered as state owned, regardless of the source of funding

These procedures apply to all pool and service vehicles that are used by the college and controlled by the physical plant director/fleet manager, including those units that have already-established procedures for proper accounting of vehicles. The following procedures are considered to be minimum standards for college vehicle use. Departments and units may develop more restrictive procedures.

The following conditions apply to all drivers of state owned vehicles. Drivers should read the conditions carefully before operating vehicles:

  1. Maintain a valid driver’s license.
  2. Fill out “Application To Check Driving Record” annually.
  3. Use college vehicles for official college business only.
  4. Notify fleet manager and security officer of any changes in license status.
  5. Never pick up hitchhikers, family members, or friends.
  6. Never drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  7. Wear seat belts when driving or as a passenger in the vehicle.
  8. Operate the vehicle in accordance with all state and local laws.
  9. Operate the vehicle in accordance with all state college regulations and guidelines.
  10. Complete the department logbook for off-campus use. Record all miles, fuel, repairs, location and type of business attending.
  11. Assume all responsibility for any and all fines or traffic violations associated with the use of a state college vehicle.
  12. Do not use a cell phone while driving. Pull over to a safe area.
  13. Be cautious of road conditions. Drive at an appropriate speed.
  14. Report all accidents whether minor or serious.
  15. Never smoke in the vehicle unless occupied exclusively by smokers.
  16. Never drive off-road unless directed by a supervisor or other official person, such as a policeman, fireman, safety person, etc.
  17. Remove keys and lock the vehicle when it is left unattended.

Report all accidents or damage incurred while operating a state college vehicle to the local police, The Department of Risk Management, and the fleet manager. A copy of the insurance card and instructions of what to do in the event of an accident are in the glove box.

If an accident does occur, whether your fault or others, you must:

  1. Get immediate medical attention if injured.
  2. Make no statements concerning guilt or fault.
  3. Keep calm, and do not argue. Arguing can result in a lawsuit.
  4. Notify local or state police. A police report may be necessary.
  5. Record as much information about the accident with the other parties and any witnesses to the accident. Get other parties' insurance companies' names, any license numbers, date and time of accident, other vehicle descriptions, how accident happened, and other phone numbers and addresses.
  6. Never agree to make any type of payment for the accident.
  7. Do not discuss the accident with anyone except a police officer, state college insurance company, and fleet manager.
  8. Fill out a vehicle accident report form. Send one copy to Risk Management, one to the insurance company, and one copy to the fleet manger as soon as possible.
  9. Refer all questions from lawyers, the other party to the accident, and others to the Department of Risk Management and the insurance company.

The physical plant controls all state college vehicles. The fleet manager is responsible for keeping track of vehicle use and completing any necessary forms.

That individual must:

  1. Be certain that the proper forms are filled out when a vehicle is used and also provide a vehicle log, requiring users to complete information on fuel, mileage driven, and purpose for off-campus trips.
  2. Maintain and update annually a database containing all potential drivers and maintenance records.
  3. Allow only authorized individuals with valid licenses to operate state college vehicles and require such persons to show their licenses before authorizing vehicle use.
  4. Regularly review all maintenance and service records, and schedule regular routine maintenance, including inspections and registrations requirements.
  5. Assist the Department of Risk Management and the insurance company in any accident investigation or obtaining information.

Note: The driver of the vehicle has the ultimate responsibility for seeking and possessing information about driving safety and road regulations.

  • The main use for state-owned vehicles shall be for official state business.
  • All drivers and passengers are required to wear seat belts.
  • Trailer hitches and towing for personal reasons are prohibited.
  • Using state vehicles to haul loads that could damage the vehicle is prohibited.
  • Absolutely no modifications to state vehicles are permitted, including installing stickers, antennas, bike racks, ski racks, radar detection devices, etc.
  • The use of state vehicle for personal gain is prohibited.
  • Drivers of state vehicles are responsible for all parking tickets and traffic tickets that they receive.
  • Hitchhikers cannot be picked up.

See Appendix (A), pages 6-19, for:

  • State Fleet Vehicle Replacement Goals
  • State Fleet Fueling Policy
  • State Fleet Minimum Use Criteria
  • State Fleet Management Responsibility Policy Interagency Agreements
  • State Fleet Consolidation Policy
  • State Vehicle Purchasing Restrictions
  • State Fleet Management Best Practices

Procedures To Increase Vehicle Use, Improve Efficiency of the State Fleet, and Reduce the Cost of Maintaining State Vehicles

All state agencies and institutions must adopt the following policies by February 28, 2001. Based on identified “best practices” within the government and private sector, these policies should increase vehicle use, improve fleet efficiency, and reduce maintenance costs.

Agencies and institutions are encouraged to adopt practices specific to their fleets. Policies and procedures adopted in addition to these must be consistent with the requirements of the plan.

The Office of Vehicle Fleet Management will review all required policies and procedures identified in this plan at least every two years and make recommendations for any changes to the CCG. Additionally, OVFM periodically may issue additional practices for implementation by state agencies and institutions.

The following guidelines provide minimum replacement goals for routine vehicle replacement . Attainment of these goals should minimize fleet capital and operating costs.

In general, most vehicles should be replaced when they reach six years (72 months) of service or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first. However, there may be circumstances in which vehicles may be replaced sooner (such as excessive maintenance or repair costs) or retained longer (such as unusually low maintenance costs). Fleet managers may make this determination on a case-by-case basis, using these guidelines as a starting point in their deliberations.

The following table details the specific replacement goals for different types of vehicles and vehicle uses:

Vehicle Type Purpose Replacement Goals
    Age or Mileage
Sedans and Wagons Staff or client transport 6 years 90,000 miles
Light trucks and
Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs)
(8,600 GVWR or below)
Basic transport, light hauling 6 years 100,000 miles
Passenger vans Staff or client transport 6 years 100,000 miles
Cargo VANS Cargo hauling 8 years 100,000 miles

Specialized equipment, such as heavy highway construction equipment, may not fall under any of the above categories. Such equipment may be considered for replacement according to other criteria, such as hours in service.

The Texas Department of Transportation’s equipment replacement model (TxDOT Equipment Replacement Model, or TERM) may be used in lieu of these guidelines for any or all vehicle replacement decisions.

Sources for Vehicle Replacement Goals:

Automotive Fleet, May 2000, p. 38: “Most Cited Written Replacement Policies”

Vehicle Remarketing Directory, p. 90: “Utility and Public Service Fleets Have Longest Lifecycles”

State of Oregon Vehicle Replacement Statement

State of Washington Vehicle Replacement Cycle

General Services Administration Greater Southwestern & Rocky Mountain Regional Bulletin, Oct. 1, 1996

Transportation Consultants, Inc., “State of Texas Report on Statewide Fleet Management,” 3/8/00, p. 17

Texas Department of Criminal Justice Policy # 03.06, 10/22/97

Railroad Commission of Texas Vehicle Replacement Policy, p. 12, “Guidelines, Vehicle Operation”

General Services Commission Vehicle Replacement Policy SS-66.8 9/30/98

Texas Department of Transportation Equipment Replacement Model (TERM)

  1. Mandatory use of state retail fuel contracts. Statewide contracts for retail fuel services were established in 1995 with multiple vendors. These contracts, established by the CCG, remain in place, and agencies are required to use one or more of the contracted vendor cards. To the degree possible, fuel cards should be issued for specific vehicles, not for individual drivers. This will allow for fuel cost monitoring for specific vehicles. Exceptions to the use of retail state fuel contracts require a waiver from the OVFM.
  2. Use of regular unleaded gasoline. Unless specifically prohibited by manufacturer warranty or recommendations, all state vehicles operating on gasoline shall use regular unleaded gasoline. Higher octane blends (marketed as premium, super-unleaded, plus, etc.) reportedly offer no proven benefit and are prohibited for use in state vehicles, except as noted.
  3. Use of alternative fuels. Vehicles capable of using alternative fuels will use them exclusively except in certain cases specified in Title 1, Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 125, Section 125.69. Exceptions are:

    (A) where and when the alternative fuel is not available;

    (B) the range of the alternative fuel is insufficient to complete a round trip, in which case the alternative fuel shall be used until exhausted, with conventional gasoline or diesel fuel used only to complete the trip or until the alternative fuel is available;

    (C) when the alternative fuel costs more than conventional gasoline or diesel;

    (D) when conversion equipment is not working or is unsafe to operate, in which case timely repairs or inspections shall be made so that the vehicle may continue to operate on the alternative fuel; and

    (E) when operating exclusively on an alternative fuel is contrary to the vehicle manufacturer or alternative fuel conversion equipment vendor recommendations.

  4. Refueling at self-service islands or central fueling facilities only. State and institution employees will use self-service islands when refueling at retail fueling stations.

The Office of Vehicle Fleet Management (OVFM) will develop and distribute, beginning October 30, 2001, agency-specific quarterly (or semi-annual, as appropriate) reports (based on reported fleet data) identifying vehicles that have accumulated less than the minimum mileage for the past three months of operation. The minimum mileage criteria will be increased over a three-year period beginning September 1, 2000. The criteria will be as follows:

  • Sept. 1, 2000 – Aug. 31, 2001:
    1,750 miles every 3 months (7,000 annual miles)
  • Sept. 1, 2001 – Aug. 31, 2002:
    2,250 miles every 3 months (9,000 annual miles)
  • Sept. 1, 2002 – Aug. 31, 2003:
    2,750 miles every 3 months (11,000 annual miles)

OVFM shall establish other suitable minimum use criteria with specific agencies or institutions when appropriate. The following vehicles are exempt from this process:

  • Vehicles with a manufacturer’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of more than 8,600 pounds; and
  • Vehicles purchased with non-appropriated funds or vehicles purchased with federal funds for specific federal projects.

Agencies and institutions will have 30 days from the quarterly (or semi-annual) OVFM report date to submit written justification for retaining those vehicles identified as failing to meet minimum mileage criteria. Extensions may be granted by OVFM for agencies required to justify large numbers of vehicles. Justification information that agencies may submit for OVFM review includes, but is not limited to:

  • How does the vehicle help accomplish the mission of the agency? What services are provided with the vehicle? What is the core function of the vehicle and how does this relate to the core function of the agency?
  • If the vehicle is campus-based or used primarily in a confined area, how many trips per day or days per month is the vehicle used? How many passengers per month are carried?
  • What is the cost to rent or lease a comparable vehicle for the same number of days or trips compared to the of ownership?

OVFM will provide waivers for specific time periods for individual vehicles based on OVFM’s agreement with and acceptance of the justification information submitted by an agency or institution. No waivers will be granted for vehicles designated as poolable that do not meet the minimum use criteria.

OVFM may grant a lifetime waiver to a vehicle that is deemed so unique in its function or design that an agency is unable to use the vehicle for any other purpose or to rotate the vehicle within the fleet.

If OVFM does not agree with an agency or institution’s justification, it will provide the agency and CCG written documentation stating the agency/institution name, vehicle identification number, license plate, year, make, model, and reason for the waiver denial.

The agency/institution will have six months from the notification date to increase vehicle use to meet the minimum mileage criteria. If at the end of this six-month period, the vehicle in question still does not meet minimum mileage criteria, OVFM will identify the vehicle as excess and notify both the agency/institution and the CCG. Vehicles identified as excess will be prepared for sale as specified in this Plan. Funds from the sale of these vehicles will be deposited in the individual agency accounts used to purchase the vehicles, as specified by House Bill 3125.

Agency and University Responsibilities

Each state agency and institution shall appoint and maintain an individual specifically responsible for management of its fleet. This may be a part-time or full-time position, depending upon the size and complexity of the fleet to be managed. This position may be manager of a department dedicated to fleet management or a single individual with fleet management responsibilities. This position shall be empowered, with executive approval, to make all fleet management decisions within OVFM guidelines, including, but not limited to:

  • vehicle purchasing decisions;
  • vehicle replacement decisions;
  • maintenance decisions;
  • repair decisions;
  • vehicle assignment and use decisions;
  • disposal decisions; and
  • review reported inappropriate use of state vehicles.

Each agency or university head is responsible for ensuring that the fleet manager is supported in implementing and enforcing the Plan. This position shall be the central point of contact with the OVFM and is responsible for reporting vehicle use data, responding to queries about the agency’s fleet, preparing waiver requests, and conducting any other business with OVFM. This position will also be responsible for observing and enforcing statewide fleet management policies and procedures at the agency level.

Office of Vehicle Fleet Management Responsibilities

OVFM will:

  • collect and analyze essential fleet data;
  • create and implement the CCG state fleet management plan;
  • set, implement and enforce state fleet policies;
  • provide standardized fleet reports to agencies;
  • within capabilities, offer direct and contracted support for repair and maintenance of vehicles in Travis County;
  • promote and develop statewide contracts for repair and maintenance;
  • offer fleet management support through publications, Web sites, meetings and other forms of communication, as needed
  • serve as liaison between the GSC Purchasing Division and state agencies or institutions to ensure that state contracts for fleet functions are maintained and promoted, and
  • implement the Plan using currently allocated full-time equivalents (FTEs) and any additional internally reallocated FTEs.
Agencies and institutions shall develop inter-agency agreements to obtain maintenance, repairs and fuel where feasible. Agencies and institutions shall provide OVFM with a comprehensive list of inter-agency agreements for maintenance and fueling no later than January 1, 2001. OVFM will compile and publish a directory on the GSC web site detailing facility locations and available services by May 1, 2001.

Use of state motor pools, whether for individual agencies or consolidated efforts among two or more state agencies, is encouraged to increase vehicle use and improve the efficiency of the state fleet. Agencies and institutions with existing pools shall require use of pool vehicles over other options, including rental vehicles or employee reimbursement for use of personal vehicles, except in cases where pool vehicles are unavailable, unreliable, or there is a more cost-effective alternative.

Agencies or institutions not currently operating motor pools are required to form motor pools consisting of all vehicles not assigned to field employees. Field employees are those employees whose regular duties require work in locations other than agency headquarters or regional offices and who regularly require a vehicle for ongoing daily duties. Agencies shall review the use of all field vehicles and identify opportunities for reduction/consolidation or establishing motor pools for field employees.

Pool vehicles must be available for checkout as needed. Consistently underused pool vehicles must be rotated to field assignments or sold as surplus.

Assignment of a vehicle to an individual administrative or executive on a regular or daily basis is prohibited without written documentation that the assignment is critical to the mission of the agency or institution.

Agencies or institutions assigning vehicles to individual administrative or executive employees shall report the following information to OVFM no later than February 28, 2001 and thereafter as assignments occur:

  • vehicle identification number, license plate number, year, make and model;
  • name and position of the individual to whom it is assigned (except law enforcement officers when this reporting
    could jeopardize the individual’s security); and
  • reason the assignment is critical to the mission of the agency or institution.

Chapter Six: Fleet Management Best Practices

The following guidelines are government and private sector fleet “Best Practices.” These practices increase state vehicle use and efficiency and reduce maintenance and operating costs of the state fleet. All are considered “Best Practices” within a specific fleet program; therefore, not all are applicable to every fleet situation. State fleet managers should use these practices where feasible. Best Practices adopted by any state agency or institution must be consistent with the requirements of this Plan. Sources for all Best Practices are documented at the end of this chapter.

  1. Determine which vehicles are underused using annual mileage as a guide. In most situations, cars or light trucks that are driven less than 7,000 miles per year should be evaluated against the minimum use criteria in this Plan. (Exceptions may occur for vehicles used only on campuses or for special purposes. See “State Fleet Minimum Use Criteria,” Chapter Two for additional guidelines.) Vehicles should either be reassigned to areas in which they can be used more effectively, such as a central motor pool, or sold. Use sales proceeds to replace vehicles that are older and more expensive to maintain.
  2. Cap fleet size at current levels. This forces vehicle operators to do more with the vehicles currently under their control. Replace vehicles only on a one-for-one basis. Allow new vehicles without identified replacements only for legislatively mandated program changes, federal program initiatives, or documented need resulting from program grown or changes.
  3. Consider outsourcing general transportation vehicles. Tarleton State University found it more cost-effective to outsource general transportation vehicles through a contracted rental vehicle agency than to own such vehicles. They found they could lease or rent some special purpose vehicles on an as-needed basis. They also allow mileage reimbursement for the use of personal vehicles for employees when this option is more cost effective.
  1. Large agencies should assign department or division vehicle coordinators as contact persons for departmental vehicle matters. The agency fleet director or manager should meet with vehicle coordinators to discuss their roles and responsibilities, as well as policies and vehicle issues as they arise.
  2. Continuously monitor trade publications for improved processes, products and training materials. Use environmentally friendly products and processes whenever possible.
  3. Consider the benefits of having your agency’s fleet manager participate in professional educational opportunities, including the National Association of Fleet Administrators, Inc. NAFA offers workshops and annual meetings, professional certification, publications, information services, and networking opportunities. See the NAFA Web site for more information: www.nafa.org.
  1. Establish written fleet policies and procedures. Policies and procedures should address, at a minimum:
    • who is eligible to drive an agency vehicle;
    • use of personally owned vehicles;
    • new vehicle delivery;
    • vehicle replacement schedules;
    • disposal of used vehicles;
    • preventive maintenance;
    • warranty tracking;
    • repairs;
    • safety and accident reporting;
    • traffic violations;
    • registration renewals;
    • who is responsible for policy implementation and monitoring; and
    • responsibilities of vehicle drivers.
  2. Create a reference card summarizing fleet policies and place a copy of the card in every agency or institution vehicle. Reference page numbers in your agency’s complete fleet policies and procedures handbook.
  3. Give drivers and operators an easy-to-understand booklet that translates complicated policies and procedures into plain English.
  4. Set separate minimum driver qualifications for all employees using vehicles regularly as part of their jobs and for those who may only occasionally drive a vehicle in work-related activities. Screen potential new drivers through the Department of Public Safety (DPS) for driving violations and license status annually. Set clear penalties for failure to maintain an acceptable driving record.
  5. Establish a formal training program to familiarize new drivers with the type of vehicle they will be driving. The program could include defensive driving techniques, as well as information specific to the area (such as a congested campus) where the vehicle will be used.
  1. Create a centralized motor pool to minimize fleet size. Make it available to all departments on an as-needed basis. Create sub-pools, as needed, for remote locations or departments with special needs.
  2. Use state vehicle rental contracts for pool units and for vehicles used infrequently or as back up units.
  3. Investigate partnering with other state entities in close proximity to create a joint-use vehicle pool to downsize individual fleets.
  1. Use “Mules,” “Gators,” or utility carts instead of licensed vehicles, where appropriate. Several agencies, especially universities, find utility or golf cart-type vehicles useful instead of trucks or other licensed vehicles when used exclusively on campus. These vehicles are not licensed for on-road use, however, and agencies should follow all traffic laws regarding their use.

    • about half the cost of a truck or less (depending upon model);
    • can carry two people;
    • can be equipped with a bed to carry tools or equipment up to several hundred pounds;
    • can get into places where trucks cannot;
    • because they are slow moving, they are less likely to be used inappropriately and are safer around student areas;
    • ideal for rough terrain because of big tires;
    • life expectancy about that of a truck; and
    • golf carts can be electric (significant fuel savings).
  2. Use life cycle cost benefit analysis software (LifeCycle) when a vehicle is added to your fleet to determine if alternative fuel conversion is cost-effective. If so, you can save significantly on fuel costs. If not, you can apply for a waiver from OVFM and remain in compliance with alternative fuel requirements. Either way, you will save money. Contact OVFM for additional information regarding LifeCycle software.
  1. Rotate tires at manufacturer-recommended intervals and require drivers to inspect tire air pressure weekly. Assist drivers by providing a tire gauge in each vehicle. Properly inflated tires last longer and contribute to fuel efficiency.
  2. Replace brake pads and shoes before they wear disks or drums. Pads and shoes are cheaper than disks and drums. Replace as needed and save money in the long run.
  3. Establish local agreements for service and repairs with city, county or other state entities. Municipal and state shops usually offer less expensive rates than commercial operations and are often faster than large commercial operations. For example, OVFM operates a “one-stop” maintenance shop in Austin for preventive maintenance, eliminating the need to bid for major repairs, and then bill the agency directly. If you operate a shop, make arrangements to provide services to other state entities when possible.
  4. Recycle parts from wrecked vehicles. DPS routinely reuses driveline components (motors, transmissions and rear ends) from totaled vehicles, where appropriate, resulting in significant cost savings. Body components such as sheet metal and air bags can also be reused. Savings are compounded when such parts are used to refurbish a unit being prepared for disposal. Be sure to remove usable parts from wrecked vehicles as soon as possible and store for future use. Do not keep vehicle carcasses on the premises indefinitely, as they can pose safety and environmental hazards.
  5. Create a specific vehicle maintenance policy or schedule for each class of vehicles operated. Enforce the policies and schedules to ensure routine service is completed as scheduled.
  6. 22. Consider the benefits of establishing relationships with vehicle manufacturers. If your fleet contains several of the same make or model from the same manufacturer, you should get to know the manufacturer’s representatives in the areas of sales, service and engineering. DPS uses such relationships to expedite service, warranty claims and to obtain information on a routine basis. If the manufacturer requests your cooperation in testing new fixes for persistent problems or new equipment, try to accommodate them.
  7. Track vehicle and parts warranties to achieve maximum savings on maintenance and repairs. A good warranty tracking system can prevent you from paying for repairs or parts that are still covered under manufacturer warranties.
  1. 24. Dispose of surplus vehicles promptly, in accordance with state surplus property procedures. The longer they sit, the more they depreciate.
  2. Prepare vehicles for disposal by using the least amount of resources for the best sales price. If you can use inmate labor or part-time student labor to clean and refurbish vehicles to be sold, you may be able to sell a vehicle for considerably more than it would sell for otherwise. DPS details and repaints most of the vehicles it sells at auction and realizes a higher price with a relatively low investment. DPS also reuses parts from totaled vehicles to refurbish vehicles being prepared for disposal. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice uses inmate labor for vehicle refurbishing, and they are willing to refurbish vehicles for other agencies.
  3. Follow the state vehicle replacement guidelines established by this Plan. As an alternative, TxDOT has an internal model called the TxDOT Equipment Replacement Model (TERM) that it uses for 85 percent of its vehicles. TERM is based on three pre-set standards established for each vehicle class code: vehicle age, life usage (mileage or hours of service), and lifetime repair costs. TxDOT is working to make this model available through PC software so that other agencies may use it. Contact TxDOT for more information.
  1. Use an automated parts inventory system to track parts availability. Such a system can help guarantee that frequently used parts are available when needed and can simplify ordering procedures.
  2. Use an automated work order system to automatically schedule preventive maintenance, provide shop productivity and detailed repair information, and update the billing system.
  3. 29. Use rebuilt, recycled parts and supplies when possible. Examples include recapped tires and re-refined oil. Rebuilt and recycled parts are usually less expensive than new parts, and, especially for high-mileage vehicles, may be preferable. Sell used batteries, oil, tires and scrap metal to firms specializing in recycling these materials.
  4. Train technicians and encourage them to obtain continuing education and certifications. The UT - Austin shop is recognized as a warranty center by General Motors, which means they can do their own warranty work on GM vehicles and be reimbursed directly by the manufacturer. This requires their technicians to be highly trained, and they receive additional training directly from the manufacturer.
  5. If your operation includes more than one shop, review the possible cost-savings of consolidating all maintenance areas into one central shop. Possible cost-savings may result from fewer staff, bulk purchases of commonly used parts, decreased need for equipment and tools, and better control of billing procedures.
  1. Never overload vehicles. Always stay within the manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight guidelines. Overloading vehicles stresses body parts and can be dangerous, as well as harmful to the vehicle.
  2. Evaluate vehicle use and rotate underused vehicles within and between departments to achieve maximum use.
  3. Transfer high-mileage pool vehicles to on-campus maintenance and grounds departments where they will not be driven as far. This can extend useful vehicle life by several years.
  1. Change oil and fluids at manufacturer-recommended intervals. (See #36 for possible exception.)
  2. Couple any attempts to extend oil change intervals with a reliable oil analysis program.
  1. Improve with drivers and fleet coordinators. Institute regular communications such as regular meetings, written memos or newsletters to keep agency drivers and departmental fleet coordinators informed of changes to fleet practices, policies and procedures. Provide information that drivers and those with vehicle responsibilities can use to improve safety, save money or efficiently use present resources.
  2. Provide a vehicle use manual with each vehicle. This should be an agency-specific manual that includes:
    • proof of insurance statement;
    • vehicle use rules or policies;
    • accident reporting procedures; and
    • emergency contact telephone numbers.

Chapter Eight: Vehicle Purchasing Restrictions

The vehicle purchasing moratorium imposed by HB 3125 will be lifted for agencies and institutions as soon as agency rules or procedures are adopted to implement the Plan and reviewed and approved by OVFM. Agencies and institutions shall adopt rules or procedures to implement the Plan no later than February 28, 2001 as stated in Chapter Seven.

After February 28, 2001, OVFM will not grant a waiver for vehicle purchases if the agency or institution has failed to adopt rules or procedures as required by V.T.C.A., Government Code Sec. 2171.1045. This provision excludes those vehicles exempted under (b) and (c) of Section 2171.105.

Except in cases of legislatively mandated program changes, federal program initiatives, or documented need resulting from program growth or changes, agencies and institutions shall not increase fleet size. The chief operating officer or designee must certify in writing to OVFM any vehicles purchased due to legislatively mandated program changes, federal program initiatives, or need resulting from program growth or changes. All such waiver requests must be received in writing from the Executive Director, President, or head of the agency or institution making the request. Documentation must fully specify the mandate or need to exceed the vehicle cap.

Once an agency’s or institution’s rules, policies or procedures to implement the Plan are approved by OVFM, replacement vehicles may be purchased without a waiver on a one-for-one basis. No approval is needed from OVFM as long as the agency or institution does not increase fleet size; however, agencies must submit written notification of vehicle replacement to OVFM. The notification shall include the following information as soon as it becomes available for both the new vehicle and the vehicle that is being replaced:

  • vehicle identification number;
  • license plate number;
  • year;
  • make; and
  • model.

Vehicles may be transferred from one agency or institution to another, but only if there is no net increase in the receiving agency’s fleet. Exceptions are allowed as indicated above if proper chief operating officer certification is provided.

A state agency or institution may accept donated vehicles; however, donated vehicles are subject to all reporting requirements of the Plan. Agencies and institutions may not replace donated vehicles using appropriated funds without OVFM approval.

Vehicle purchasing restrictions do not apply to the following:

  • law enforcement vehicles, including pursuit vehicles;
  • emergency vehicles;
  • vehicles used for safety purposes;
  • vehicles used for vehicle research purposes, such as crash tests;
  • heavy equipment, including tractors, bulldozers and highway construction and maintenance equipment;
  • vehicles designed to transport 15 passengers or more*;
  • non-licensed utility purpose vehicles such as “Mules,” “Gators,” or golf-carts and fork lifts;
  • wrecked vehicles; and
  • vehicles destroyed due to a natural disaster.

*if the agency or institution has purchased such vehicles in the past.

Next Steps