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Audit Report: IG-0728

May 17, 2006

The Department’s Utilization of Fleet Vehicles

The Department of Energy's (Department) Property Management Regulations require fleets of vehicles to be kept at the minimum necessary to meet programmatic needs. To that end, they require that organizations establish controls to help ensure the most economical utilization of vehicles. While fleet managers are allowed to establish local utilization standards that are less than those specified by the Department, they are also required to maintain utilization records, review utilization at least annually and identify all vehicles failing to meet local use objectives. Once underused vehicles are identified, fleet managers must take prompt action to reassign them to higher use areas, dispose of them, or justify the continued need for the vehicles. All requests to retain underutilized vehicles must be approved by the Department. Despite these requirements, we found that a significant percentage of the Department's fleet vehicles were underutilized.