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Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Berry 'Sets the Tone' With Used Wheels
By Dan McKay
Journal Staff Writer
One of the perks of running City Hall is the car. Every mayor gets one for on-the-job driving.
So when Richard Berry won election this fall, he got a call from the city administration: "What kind of new vehicle should we order for you?"
Berry's response: Whatever you do, don't spend money on a new car.
Instead, Berry wanted a used vehicle out of the city's fleet.
"These things don't get you $50 million" in savings, Berry told the Journal recently. "What they do is set the tone."
The mayor ended up in a 2006 Chevrolet Tahoe LS. It has about 41,000 miles.
A new one would have cost more than $40,000. Berry's is valued at $18,000.
Of course, age has its drawbacks. The Chevy's engine is already "knocking a bit," and Berry is taking it in for a checkup.
The top executive under Berry, Chief Administrative Officer David Campbell, didn't get a new car, either. In fact, he made out worse.
The motor pool gave him a Tahoe with 90,000 miles.
So perhaps it's good to be the mayor after all.