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College Vehicles: The Thrifty Right Hand Versus the Wasteful Left One
The College has a fleet of vehicles for various purposes, including serving the President. Jim Kim was rumored to have had the use of three College cars: one for himself, one for Mrs. Kim, and one for the family nanny. Not so for incoming President Phil Hanlon ‘77. He’s downsizing the College’s Park Avenue Ultra (licence plate: “Vox 1”) in favor of a Toyota Prius. Good move, both as symbolism, and in order to save a few bucks that could go to better use.
Regrettably, the spirit of living within one’s means has not yet been picked up by the College’s Safety & Security department. S&S recently traded in its hybrid Ford Escapes for Ford Police Interceptors, high-powered sports utility vehicles normally only sold to law enforcement agencies:
I have no idea why the College needs these 304hp, 3.7l, monsters. They are an unjustifiable choice for S&S’s tiny jurisdiction; after all, the maximum speed limit in Hanover and on the road up to DHMC never tops 40mph. And Interceptors only get 17mpg — though mileage may vary, especially for certain S&S officers who sit for hours in their vehicles with the motor running while watching movies on their laptops in the parking lot at Thompson Arena. Did you guys think that we wouldn’t notice?
In fact, these overweight cars are an illustration of one of the challenges facing President Hanlon: he might make good choices himself, but he has his work cut out for him in imbuing the sprawling bureaucracy with the right values.
Addendum: An arms race seems to be under way in low-crime Hanover. The Town of Hanover Police has upgraded its fleet from the Crown Victorias (below left) that have been in use for four years to the sedan version of the Ford Police Interceptor — no need for the SUV edition, I guess.
New Hampshire already has one of the lowest crime rates in the nation. Do we need even more heavy armament to to safeguard the citizenry?
Addendum: Chief Giaccone, a faithful reader and a fine man — despite our differences of opinion on policy — writes in with a comment:
I just read the blog article on police cruisers. We are actually getting 16% better gas mileage from our new cars. We were not looking for power, but durability and functonality, as cruisers are the offices for the officers.
The Chief has had some health problems recently. Let’s all wish him a speedy return to good health.
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…
August 23, 2009
Fare Thee Well, Tom Crady
And now Dean Tom Crady has precipitously announced his departure from the College after only 20 months on the job. How to read this? By way of background, prior to coming to Dartmouth, Crady had…
May 31, 2009
Kangaroo Court, Indeed
In an interview with The Dartmouth, alumni-elected trustee T.J. Rodgers ‘70 explained his reasons for declining to participate in future evaluations of trustees up for “re-election,” namely the “kangaroo court” nature of such discussion in…