LEE CO., GA (WALB) - Lee County leaders used tax dollars to replace outdated patrol cars for the Sheriff's Office and other departments.
Lee County deputies can't protect their residents without good working patrol cars.
"You're in a mess, some of them break down, you don't have spare cars to have in place while the other ones are being repaired," Sheriff Reggie Rachals explained.
Sheriff Rachals said re-purposing SPLOST tax dollars to replace outdated cars with more than 250,000 miles was money well-spent.
"Putting it back into equipment that's well overdue needed to get rid of some of the other cars we have with such high mileage on it," Rachals remarked.
Lee County commissioners bought seven Chevrolet Tahoes, two Chevrolet Impalas and a Ford Crown Victoria from the Federal Immigration Department.
"It's our way of just trying to make sure the Sheriff's Office has the most productive but the safest vehicles that they could have on the road," Lee County County Manager Mike Sistrunk explained.
Two of the cars were new and some of the others have about 100,000 miles on them.
Sheriff Rachals said "all of the equipment on it, blue lights, sirens, radio mounted equipment inside in the place of the console, it was a great savings for the county."
"What it would cost us last year $145,000 for four vehicles," Sistrunk remarked.
This year, it costs about $90,000 for 9 cars and that means more patrol cars on the county roads to keep residents safe.
With the re-purposing of SPLOST tax dollars, Lee County commissioners were also able to re-fleet Code Enforcement and Public Works Departments.
The Lee County Sheriff's Office is also looking to fill three new patrol officer positions that recently opened.
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