Powell, Liberty Township sign fuel-sharing agreement

JIM FISCHER
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Rick Karr (left), Liberty Township fiscal officer, Powell police Chief Stephen Hrytzik (center) and township fire Chief Tom O'Brien stand at the fuel depot at the township's Fire Station 321. Powell city vehicles will be able to refuel there thanks to a new pact between the city and township.

In an agreement almost as notable for its spirit of cooperation as its fiscal benefit to both entities, the city of Powell and Liberty Township have approved a shared-services program that will allow Powell police and other city vehicles and to use the township's Fire Station 321 fuel depot.

Powell City Council voted 7-0 at its Sept. 1 meeting to enter into the agreement, which initially was proposed and approved by the township in August.

Township fiscal officer Rick Karr worked with Powell police Chief Stephen Hrytzik and township fire Chief Tom O'Brien on the agreement, which could save both entities thousands of dollars, Karr said.

"This collaborative agreement will allow both Powell and Liberty Township to share the costs of annual software maintenance and enable Powell to realize per-gallon savings instead of paying retail prices and receive the same wholesale price as the township's vehicles," Karr said.

Liberty Township currently fills all township vehicles at Fire Station 321 using a fuel system with video surveillance to record each refueling.

The township fiscal office will provide the city with a monthly invoice and report for its respective fuel usage.

"We're excited to work with the city of Powell to use tax dollars as efficiently as possible," township Administrator Mike Schuiling said. "This initiative is a great investment for our shared community."

"The city of Powell is a natural partner of the township's, geographically," said City Manager Andrew White. "This is a good example of one effort to collaborate and realize efficiencies for constituents of both local governments. Powell City Council has identified this type of collaboration as a priority in its strategic planning, and the administration is actively working to establish it."

Karr said the agreement would allow any city vehicle -- not just police -- to use the fuel station.

"It's a good partnership and a start to possibly finding other ways we can work together," Karr said.

"While a smaller piece of legislation, this agreement represents our continued commitment of fiscal conservatism to our residents," council member Brian Lorenz said. "Further, it is another example of how partnering with our neighbors can create successes for our respective jurisdictions."

Karr also said the township might consider extending the same agreement to other governmental entities that use township roads.

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