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SCHOOL BUS PURCHASE PROPOSITION

(April 18, 2018) A separate proposition on the May 15 ballot seeks voter approval to purchase four (4) school buses at a cost not to exceed $476,020. The bus purchase is part of an ongoing bus replacement plan designed to keep the district’s fleet in safe, working order.

The school bus proposition breaks down as follows:

  • $242,520 for the purchase of two (2) 72-passenger buses w/equipment storage
  • $238,000 for the purchase of two (2) 72-passenger buses
  • -$4,500 trade in
  • $476,020 bus proposition total

Because the District is eligible to receive approximately 58 percent State Aid on the purchase of these buses, the actual cost to the District will be significantly less than the amount requiring voter approval. This reduces the local taxpayer share to $199,928 which would be paid for through a Bond Anticipation Notice (BAN) over five years.

If approved by voters, the bus proposition would allow the District to trade in/sell two (2) buses that have become too costly for the district to maintain. The two buses average 128,605 miles and the average age is 11 years. The State Education Department recommends that districts replace small buses every five to seven years and large buses every 10 years.

Bus Purchase Q&A

Why does the district purchase buses on a regular basis?
The proposed bus purchase is part of an ongoing bus replacement plan designed to ensure student
safety and control repair and maintenance costs on older buses. The replacement plan has also helped
the district establish an excellent safety record with the New York State Department of Transportation.

How does the district determine when to replace a bus?
Mileage is not the only consideration when determining which buses to remove from service and to
replace. The primary consideration is the age of the bus. The average life span of a school bus in the
Northeast is roughly 10 to 12 years mostly due to weather conditions. The salt mixture used on local
roads is corrosive to a bus’ structure. State law requires buses to undergo rigorous safety inspections
twice a year. If a school bus fails one of these inspections, it must be taken off the road immediately
and cannot be put back into service until it meets the state’s standards. It costs much more to maintain an older bus to the state’s standards then it costs to maintain a new bus. New vehicles also carry lower
maintenance costs for the first five years, when they are still under warranty.