Why did UH spend nearly $100K on new Dodge Chargers for campus security?

Local News

It’s new. It’s sleek, and it’s fast. But is it too much just for an on-campus patrol car?

Three brand new Dodge Chargers have been patrolling the University of Hawaii Manoa campus recently.

“I definitely think they could have gone cheaper,” said UH student Jasmine Francisco.

The vehicles were purchased to patrol campus and help increase security.The UH Department of Public Safety also says there was a need for new vehicles.

“It usually is on an as needed basis so the last time we purchased new vehicles was in 2011 so it has been quite a while,” said Sarah Rice with the UH Department of Public Safety.

The total cost of all three vehicles was nearly $100,000, each of them costing $32,779.

“And that was outfitted with all our equipment so communications, radios,” Said Rice. “We need them all outfitted with all of that equipment.”

The DPS does need a wide variety of vehicles for different tasks, from trucks to SUV’s, but why go with a Dodge Charger?

“We do use golf carts, but when we have a call for service on campus we need to use the best means. We need to get us there as quickly as possible to make sure that we are servicing that complaint in a timely manner,” said Rice.

So could there have been a cheaper option?

“We are required by the procurement process to take the least expensive vehicles provided that it actually meets all the minimum qualifications that we have for it,” said rice.

“I mean a Dodge Charger?” said Francisco. “The price for that is crazy.”

The UH Department of Public Safety currently has 12 vehicles in their fleet.

The vehicles are also used to patrol the UH School of Medicine.

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