AUBURN, NY - Suggested changes to reduce the cost of operating Cayuga County's fleet and make it more environmentally friendly include improving record-keeping, appointing a dedicated fleet manager, and purchasing alt-fuel vehicles, according to The Citizen.

Energy analyst Susan Galbraith presented Nov. 2 the preliminary results of a study that aims to reduce the cost and negative environmental consequences of operating the County fleet. The study is funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Agency.

Currently, no one has oversight of all County vehicles; each department has its own cars. The County motor pool is in charge of maintaining and distributing gasoline-fueled vehicles, and the highway department maintains diesel-fueled vehicles.

Some of Galbraith's recommendations are already taking place. The county highway department plans to buy two half-ton pickup trucks and convert its fuel systems to compressed natural gas This is expected to save about $1 per gallon on fuel and reduce pollutants.

The highway department purchased fleet management software that will help them keep track of where vehicles are, how often they're used, and what maintenance costs are. Galbraith told the committee that by having that information collected in one place, the county can make more informed decisions about when to replace vehicles, according to the newspaper.