Arizona Limits Use of Fleet Vehicles
Grappling with rising gas prices and a $1 billion budget deficit, the Arizona Department of Administration is urging agencies with vehicle fleets to limit trips whenever possible, according to a report by The Phoenix Business Journal and Newsradio 620 KTAR.A spokesman said higher gas prices will impact state agency budgets and as a result the department is advising agencies to “make sure they're doing a good job of utilizing their cars, and take necessary trips, not frivolous, wasteful trips.”The report featured several other fleets that are feeling pressure from higher prices at the pump:Since last year, diesel expenses for water and power provider Salt River Project have increased 100 percent while unleaded fuel costs have jumped 50 percent.A spokesman for Arizona Public Service said the utility’s fleet has seen fuel costs increase 6 to 7 cents per mile, or an additional $112,000 per month. Airport transportation company SuperShuttle, which is based in Phoenix, said fuel costs comprise eight to 10 percent of its 1,500-van fleet’s operating costs when fuel prices are stable. "The company is in the transportation business and it's not a high margin-based business and 4 or 5 percentage points can really take you from being profitable to not profitable," said Tom LaVoy, chief financial officer. Southwest Gas Corp. has managed to avoid some of the havoc caused by skyward fuel prices: 45 percent of its fleet runs on natural gas, which has not experienced the same sharp uptick in price as gasoline.