One in eight Rochester, N.Y., police officers drives to and from work in a vehicle bought, maintained, insured and fueled at taxpayer expense. And nearly all of those city-owned cars travel to homes outside the city, reports the city’s Democrat & Chronicle. Police account for 94 of the 130 take-home vehicles assigned across all city departments. Amid a budget crisis, the City Council has asked police to review and justify each vehicle assignment.
The cars are intended for employees who can be called out at any time, whether to a crime scene or a water-main break. Investigators and narcotics officers are most likely to have a 24/7 vehicle assigned. But privileges also extend to those overseeing special events, such as festival and parade coverage, officers working in professional development and internal affairs, and an officer who once oversaw the police fleet but now has administrative duties at headquarters.