The Department of General Services will shut down four facilities for holding state vehicles and focus all operations on its Sacramento garage, Director Fred Klass announced Wednesday.
"The state garage in Sacramento, near most state employees, makes sense--but brick and mortar locations elsewhere have become too costly," Klass said in a statement.
The 26 employees at the Fresno, Los Angeles and Oakland garages along with the San Diego office will have a chance to move to open positions within DGS or receive priority for other state posts for which they qualify.
Klass's order also will eliminate preventative maintenance operations at the Sacramento garage.
DGS said the closings will save the state $2 million annually -- consistent with Gov. Jerry Brown's efforts to reduce the size of state government. The winding down of operations will begin later this year.
"We cannot continue the status quo with our state fleet operations by maintaining non-essential facilities," Klass said in the statement. "Although the employees who work in at these garages do a fine job, the data shows us that the garages are no longer cost beneficial for taxpayers in supporting state government."
DGS spokesman Eric Lamoureux said in recent years fewer state workers had been picking up cars from the remaining state garages outside of Sacramento. The state has a contract with Enterprise Rent-A-Car, which often serves as a more convenient location for employees to get cars.
Some of the facilities were built more than 50 years ago to service state vehicles, according to DGS. But service and repair now also can be handled at private shops.
Brown issued an executive order in January that called for the state to cut in half its fleet of 11,000 nonessential passenger cars and trucks. Vehicles at the garages to be closed will be moved to Sacramento or dropped from the state fleet per the governor's order.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This post has been changed to reflect that DGS amended a previous statement to say that the state's leases for the Oakland and Los Angeles facilities will not be renewed. The Fresno location is part of a state complex and will become a parking garage. The San Diego office is in a state office building.
PHOTO CREDIT: A series of Toyota Prius Hybrids sit on the Sacramento garage in September 2009. Hector Amezcua / Sacramento Bee.