At the February 2, 2021 City Council meeting, the City Council made the following motion that passed:
City Council works on the vision and goals of the City, while City Administration (City Manager, Finance Director, etc.) are tasked with the day-to-day operations of the City. The motion above is to task City Administration with coming up with a plan, as that will take research and experts in various fields (electricians to install the charging stations, finance director to analyze the fiscal impact, City Manager to consult with employees on what vehicles will be best for them, etc.). As of March 13, 2021, the motion above was the latest action by City Council. We had tabled an item regarding charging stations after the motion above, but have not passed anything yet regarding the topic. It will be on the agenda for the upcoming City Council meeting again. Also, this plan should include recommendations on things such as buying new vs. used electric vehicles, how many vehicles to purchase and when, and which model to buy (the Building Department brought up concerns about specific types of vehicles).
What led up to the motion above was the following.
On May 8, 2019, City Council voted to use a leasing program through Enterprise for police department vehicles, and one fire department vehicle, as seen with the following motion. Please note that the motion specifies the police department and the Deputy Fire Chief vehicle. The motion makes no mention of the code enforcement fleet changing. And as a note, at the point of the motion, the City was not leasing any vehicles and was strictly buying only.
Then, on November 20, 2020, City Council discovered via the City Manager's weekly report, that the City had leased 11 new vehicles (10 for code enforcement and 1 for the DPW) from Enterprise. These leases were never approved by City Council, and were leased before City Council even had a chance to object (but never should have been bought anyway without a successful motion from City Council, as any capital purchases over $5,000 must go through the City Council). That is what led to the motion made at the February 2, 2021 meeting. My plan was to bring up electric vehicles as we needed to replace the 2014 Ford Fiestas currently being used by code enforcement, and to my dismay, we had leased combustion engine vehicles.
To continue doing everything we can to save the environment, and considering that electric vehicles will be a reality soon enough for all, I have happily embraced electric vehicles. GM announced that by 2035, they will no longer produce light-duty vehicles with combusion engines. They will all be electric. Electric vehicles will be the only option soon enough, and Eastpointe should be a leader in going green and doing what we can to reduce pollution in our community.