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Public sector fleets cut costs

3 November 2010

Public sector fleets are now looking for ways to cut costs as the full scale of the spending review cuts becomes clear.

One key area that is being looked at is the use of the grey fleet.

The Department for Work and Pensions has already be working to reduce its grey fleet mileage, with employees being made aware that they can only use their own vehicle for work if the journeys to be made are short or that take them to a public transport hub.

Over the past three years the DWP has been reinforcing the message that grey fleet use is to be the exception rather than the rule, the department has seen grey fleet mileage fall from 70 million in 2006 to 25 million.

Richard Fountain, the DWP’s head of sustainability and climate change says, "The answer is not to use cost-cutting as the reason for introducing measures to cut grey fleet mileage, but rather to argue that these changes are necessary to ensure the health and safety of employees and to reduce the environmental impact of the fleet."

The DWP is now working on a fully integrated travel management system, which will authorise and assign travel based on what is the most environmentally sound, the most practical and the most cost-effective solution.

The Environment Agency has also been proactive in cutting grey fleet mileage. Its employees may still use their own vehicles but will not be repaid for up to the first 75 miles of any journey. They are also limited to just 3,000 miles a year. If they clock up more business miles in their own vehicle during the year, the expense claims will not be paid.

“All journeys must be authorised and we will not pay more than 75 miles, so no one can claim for more than 75 miles for a journey,” explains Dale Eynon, head of fleet operations. “It works very well.”

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