Council invests in new hybrid vehicles for KPD

Keizer Police Department

The Keizer City Council approved $20,000 to go towards a pair of 2022 Ford Intercepter hybrid police vehicles for the Keizer Police Department at their meeting on Monday, July 19.

The City of Keizer is under contract with the Salem-Keizer School District for a Safety and Support Response Team Officer and a Youth Safety and Support Officer. Each position has a contract provision obligating the Salem-Keizer School District to pay Keizer a one-time cost of $30,000 for a properly up-fitted unmarked vehicle to be used by the officer. The vehicles are to be purchased and up-fitted by the KPD.

Police staff had originally determined that a pair of Black Dodge Durango vehicles would fit the need of the two positions — the school district would pay $30,000 for each vehicle. However, Keizer Chief of Police, John Teague, shared that the department was interested is purchasing in hybrid vehicles after seeing a presentation from Keizer resident Rich Rodriguez on co2 emissions during the public comment portion of the meeting. 

Rodriguez shared with the council a PowerPoint that he created about co2 emissions from city vehicles in Keizer.

“I solicited the information from the city, did the analysis and determined that police vehicles are the largest group that submits co2 into the city, and the city needs to be held responsible,” Rodriguez said. 

Rodriguez also shared that the city’s co2 emissions have grown in each of the last two years and asked the council to defer the decision on new vehicles until a proper analysis had been done on the potential harm they would cause to the local environment. 

Teague, however, shared later on the in the meeting that KPD would like to purchase hybrid police cars for the school officers.

“I am in favor in hybrid vehicles,” Teague said. “It is a good opportunity to put these vehicles to the test before going full-steam and buying hybrid vehicles from now on.”

Teague also said that the additional cost would be $10,000 per vehicle and proposed that the council provide $20,000 for the two cars, on top of the $60,000 given by the school district — the two vehicles are expected to last between eight and 10 years. 

The proposed resolution was passed unanimously. 

“It is a good moment in time for us to put $20,000 towards setting us up for the future with hybrid vehicles,” Teague said. 

Matt Rawlings: [email protected]