Prince George's County Executive Lawrence J. Hogan, who came to office a month ago vowing to gain control of the county bureaucracy, has found it difficult to keep officials from taking county cars home at night
In his first week in office, Hogan issued a strict order that no county cars were to be taken home by officials unless each employe had his personal approval. Police cars were the only exception.
Charles Deegan, the temporary head of the county Department of Licenses and Permits, said that to circumvent the order many county officials assigned the fleet of 250 cars were driving the cars to government parking lots near their homes.
"We have county cars parked at fird stations and libraries all over the county," Deegan said.
So Hogan has issued a new order, which designates a parking lot for each car and requires that the car be returned to the designated lot each night.
Robert Dunn, who manages the county fleet, said that the new rule should prevent abuse and could conceivably save the county $25,000 a year in extra gas.
He acknowledged, however, that some of the savings might be consumed by the administrative costs and other expenses involved in monitoring the new rule.
Hogan learned that his first order was not being obeyed when several county officials asked for assistance with stalled cars one cold morning. All of the calls were from employes who had their cars at home, including some who lived outside Prince George's according to Hogan.
"I think the employes will appreciate this policy, once they understand it," Dunn said. "After all, they are taxpayers too."