Consolidation of Muskogee’s fleet maintenance operation has been so successful that the operation has received national recognition.

The decision to convert the Bartholet Building at Muskogee Fairgrounds to a centralized fleet maintenance facility raised concerns two years ago.

The price tag to convert the building and equip the facility was  $225,000.

During its first year in operation, it was recognized as the 62nd best in the nation among 38,000 contenders and the top public-sector fleet maintenance shop in the state. Muskogee edged out Tulsa, which ranked 79th.

The rankings were based upon about a dozen criteria, which included accountability, use of technology and information, collaboration and creativity. Other factors included evidence of high trust, performance recognition, quick and efficient turnaround, competitive pricing and staff development among others.

The conversion could save taxpayers more than $100,000 per year.

“We are proud of what we have been able to accomplish in this short amount of time,” Director Robert Swepston said. “My staff is the force that drives this operation — it was a team effort getting here.”

Taxpayers and city officials should be proud of the work Swepston and his staff have accomplished.

It proves good ideas, implemented by good people, can compete with any city in the nation.

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