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Councilwoman Fined for Keeping City Vehicles Too Long

February 21, 2003

Gwen Chandler, a Jacksonville City Councilwoman, has been fined for not returning borrowed city vehicles on time, reports the Florida Times Union. The city allows employees to sign out vehicles for out-of-town business use or conferences, but the employee must say when the car will be returned. According to a city audit, Chandler borrowed six cars between June 2001 and Nov. 2002, each time keeping the car longer than she was supposed to. Last July she signed a vehicle out for a week but kept it for two months. Chandler, who says it was a misunderstanding and that she is upset about it, will have $531 deducted from her paycheck every two weeks to repay the $4,248 back to the city motor pool. The city’s administrative officer said he was informed of Chandler's vehicle use and contacted Council Auditor Bob Johnson. When he told Chandler of the problem, she immediately asked for an audit. In September, Chandler returned a car with a cracked windshield and broken glove compartment. However, vehicles are rotated among various users and the city could not prove that Chandler was responsible for the damage and she was not billed for repairs.
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