MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - On Tuesday morning, the Midland City Council authorized a rejection of all bids for the purchase of 17 patrol cars for the Police department, and are now searching for bids to instead purchase 22 replacement cars.
"We've had some unfortunate incidents with our police officers with reckless driving," said Councilman J.Ross Lacy.
Councilman Lacy says when it comes to police car crashes, the cost can add up quick, "because of these incidents and our department having no reserve fleet left, we're having to talk about hundreds of thousands of dollars of expenditures that we didn't budget for in the budget process."
A cost that directly effects Midland residents, according to Lacy, "that is the taxpayer's vehicle and we need to treat it that way."
Though, the city wont struggle to cover this extra expenditure.
"We're seeing a robust sales tax, so we have the money to do it, but we need to make sure our officers are taking better care of the property of the tax payers," said Councilman Lacy.
This issue is also one that Lacy trusts Midland's police chief Steve Henry to take care of.
"I think chief Henry is looking into some of the disciplinary actions that we do, every incident is not the same, so we have to look at it case by case basis, and I'm confident our new police chief is taking the action to hold these officers accountable," said Lacy.
As for possible reasons behind an increase in accidents, "we have a young police department, our average years of service is under 5 years, and if you have a young department, these things happen," said Lacy.
While there may be an increase in accidents he's lost no measure of confidence in his police force's effectiveness.
"We have a fantastic police department with some of the lowest crime rates of a city of our size, they're doing a great job, we just need some additional training," said Lacy.