POLICE Magazine Supplements

Special Report 2019

Magazine for police and law enforcement

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of all of the mounts and brackets to se- cure equipment in the vehicle, and as- sembles all the wiring harnesses. Once tested, supplies for production are pur- chased from the California Prison In- dustry Authority. One technician pro- grams vehicle functions for emergency lighting and other electronic functions. Changing patrol vehicles didn't present too much of a wiring issue because 80% of the wiring in a vehicle is standard even across various makes, Mills said. Most of the assets in the CHP's fleet move through the line, including all of the 2,501 marked units as well as the undercover vehicles, tactical vehicles, motorcycles, and executive vehicles for the state's elected leaders. e garage set up the governor's black Chevrolet Sub- urban. Overall, Mills manages 4,533 as- sets, which doesn't include the 26 planes and helicopters in the CHP air fleet. Every CHP vehicle that's pressed into duty goes through the operations shop, including the ones used by officers in Southern California. e agency main- tains a facility in Torrance where two technicians give vehicles shipped down on a flatbed a final inspection before handing the keys to an officer. Units are taken out of service when they reach 100,000 miles, which is man- dated by the state's procurement agen- cy, the Department of General Services. A black-and-white unit averages about 34,500 miles per year, Mills said. Cars that are taken out of service are sold via auction at the West Sacramento facility. In the West Sacramento operations center, Mills supervises a staff of 85 fleet technicians and supervisors, who are eligible for a $150-per-month stipend negotiated in an agreement between International Union of Operating En- gineers' Unit 12 and the California De- partment of Human Resources. Mills was able to scoop up some of the technicians from local dealerships who had to lay off staff during the Great Recession. "What's key for us is the ability to retain people and get the best that's out there," Mills said. Several other public service agencies have used the assembly line, including Cal Fire, the California Department of Corrections, and even the Nevada High- way Patrol. e agencies provide Mills with the vehicles and auxiliary equip- ment, and he runs them through the line. Using the process can save an agen- cy up to four months of downtime. n Paul Clinton is the senior web editor for Automotive Fleet, Fleet Financials, Gov- ernment Fleet (Government-Fleet.com), Green Fleet, Vehicle Remarketing, and Work Truck. He is the former web editor of POLICE (PoliceMag.com). U PF I T T I NG & F L E E T M A N AG E M E N T | SP E C I A L R E P O RT | 11

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