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Update below — When the topic of Navigatorgate came up at this week’s second-most awkward mayoral press briefing, Washington Post reporter Mike DeBonis had a helpful question/suggestion for Mayor Vince Gray: Why not expand the District government’s carsharing program known as “DC Fleet Share”? Sounds good, right? Save money while potentially avoiding embarrassing scandals like the one that’s rocked District government this week.
“Is that something we can expand on here. Why does any one person need to have car when we can have a shared pool?” DeBonis asked.
Gray responded: “I’m sure we’ll look at lots of options, Mike, I don’t have an answer to that at this stage.”
But if the Gray administration is interested in expanding Fleet Share usage by employees at the Wilson Building, there’s a slight problem: Fleet Share vehicles are no longer available at the Wilson Building.
Here’s an e-mail Fleet Share participants received last month:
Dear DC Fleet Share Participants:
We wanted to inform you that effective today, January 14th, the DC Fleet Share Program will no longer have vehicles located at the John A Wilson Building. We understand that many of you have come to rely upon DC Fleet Share for your work-related transportation needs, and we apologize for any inconvenience this change may cause.
The Department of Public Works is in the process of exploring alternate parking solutions to reinstate DC Fleet Share vehicles in the area surrounding the Wilson Building. Please check the DC Fleet Share website (http://dcfleetshare.fastfleet.net) for updated location information.
We appreciate your patience and your continued participation in the DC Fleet Share Program.
The DC Fleet Share Team
LL’s been trying for a couple days to find details about Fleet Share at the Wilson Building and why this move was made. Apparently, the council staff has its own small motor pool separate from Fleet Share. LL is waiting to hear back from Linda Grant, the spokeswoman for the Department of Public Works, which operates Fleet Share.
While we wait, LL will share one perfectly reasonable theory he’s heard about last month’s e-mail: There are more people in the Gray administration who drive to work than there were in the Fenty administration. Which isn’t a big deal, but would indicate—on some level, at least—the priorities of at least one decision-maker in the Wilson Building.
Update: So much for that theory. Grant gets back to LL with this tidbit: “The Council asked us to remove the Fleet Share vehicles.” That’s all Grant wrote. LL is trying to determine whether this was Council Chairman Kwame “Fully Loaded” Brown’s decision or someone else’s. And did it, just maybe, have anything to do with …