The city of Gardner’s fuel purchase policy seems to be a success for both the city and taxpayers.
The policy was enacted after research by the Fleet Budget Review Committee and was approved by the city council in June, 2009.
It saves the city money in several ways: by eliminating a per gallon delivery charge, more accurately reflecting fluctuating fuel prices and reducing staff time through a more efficient payment process.
It also reduces city costs of maintaining a 5,000 gallon storage tank, as well as permitting costs and overhead to update the Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasures plan for the shop site estimated at more than $5,000 in 2009.
Equally important, it puts sales in the coffers of local businesses.
According to city records, about $18,000 in fuel purchases was spent locally between Aug. 14 and Sept. 14 of this year. About 38 percent of that was for the public safety department, which indicates our police are keeping a watchful eye on our community.
Although the multiplier effect of a dollar varies, assuming a low multiplier of two would mean that the $18,000 spent locally actually injects about $36,000 into the economy. In other words, every dollar spent with a local merchant remains in the community and has a ripple effect.
Because this fuel policy both saves money through cost-cutting and injecting money into the local economy, it’s a win – win for everyone.