LaFayette City Council unanimously approved the measure at its meeting Monday, Feb. 11.
The city recently purchased two more cars for the department, which means there are enough for each officer to have their own car. With cars located throughout the area, emergency response times should improve, according to LaFayette Public Safety Director Dino Richardson.
Richardson cited several goals he hopes to reach by letting officers drive the patrol cars home.
Each officer will be responsible for maintaining his vehicle, according to Richardson. If anyone is abusing their car, it will show up quickly through the maintenance records while lowering maintenance costs. An officer will tend to take better care of his car if it feels like his own.
The LaFayette police force will have a greater presence in the community with cars scattered around the area, which should act as a deterrent to crime.
Richardson also worried about keeping all of the cars at the police department. When the cars are all kept in one place, they are vulnerable to mass sabotage, he said.
In other business:
* The council awarded a $30,646.89 bid to Calhoun Meter to replace galvanized steel water lines with 8-inch PVC pipe on Corinth Road.
* The council approved a gas line extension on Lee School Road. The city will work on the extension while Georgia Department of Transportation will be working on U.S. 27 to lower cost. The extension will bring natural gas to 36 potential customers.
* The council approved the purchase of a $6,000 water turbidity recorder for the Big Springs Water Treatment Plant.
* The council awarded a $5,002 bid to Hardrock Construction Co. to repair city sidewalks.
* The council approved a contract renewal with Southeastern Power Administration for supplemental hydroelectric power.
* The council approved a contract renewal with Ameritas Group Dental to provide dental insurance for city employees.
* The council tabled the topic of city employee health insurance until Monday, Feb. 18, to investigate the benefits of switching from BlueCross BlueShield of Georgia to United Healthcare.
* Under recommendations from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, council members moved to change several ordinances for fishing in Queens City Lake. The council plans to enforce a minimum length of 14 inches to bass caught in the lake, allow DNR to restock the lake with threadfin shad, construct additional fish habitat sites, and improve boating access.
* John Sweitzer, the engineer working on the city’s water treatment facilities, announced his company’s merge with Paul B. Krebs and Associates. Sweitzer assured the council the only changes will be in name and improved service.
* Walker County Historical Society donated $500 to go toward improving John B. Gordon Hall, Gordon Hall is the oldest standing schoolhouse in Georgia, according to LaFayette Mayor Neal Florence.
* Council members agreed to use the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia to test power meters at city businesses to ensure they are working properly. There is a $100 charge to the city for each tested meter, and 20 meters a year will be tested.
* Florence announced Edward Hathcock was the employee of the month.
LaFayette City Council members called a special meeting Monday, Feb. 18, at 6:30 p.m. to decide on insurance coverage for city employees. The next regular city council meeting will be Monday, March 8, at 7:30 p.m. at City Hall on South Duke Street