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June 15, 2009  |   Comments (0)   |   Post a comment

Texas, New York districts take delivery of propane buses


School districts in Texas and New York have received propane school buses manufactured by Blue Bird Corp.

Seguin (Texas) Independent School District (ISD) has added 21 Propane-Powered Vision buses to its fleet. District officials made the decision after attending a Breathe Easy Propane School Bus workshop last year wherein Michael Williams, commissioner of the Texas Railroad Commission (TRC), discussed the benefits of the alternative fuel.

“I’m delighted that Seguin ISD has chosen to include propane as a fuel for its fleet of buses,” Williams said. “These 21 buses reduce the emissions that Seguin’s schoolchildren are exposed to, and they are a great value for the taxpayers through lower fuel and operating costs.”

Propane-powered buses qualify for federal alternative motor vehicle and alternative fuel tax credits. Additionally, because the district is located in Guadalupe County, the buses are eligible for state grants from the TRC’s Propane Equipment Initiative. The initiative is funded by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s Emission Reduction Plan fund that aims to reduce emissions in air quality non-attainment and near non-attainment counties.

“Seguin ISD is receiving $158,150 from the commission’s Propane Equipment Initiative,” Williams said. “And the Blue Bird distributor for this area, Rush Enterprises, is issuing Seguin a cash reimbursement of $7,000 per bus through the federal Alternative Motor Vehicle Tax Credit, which adds up to $147,000 for the 21 buses.”

Texas currently has 1,700 school buses that are fueled by propane, and it reportedly has 30 additional Propane-Powered Vision school buses on order, with more in the pipeline.

In related news, Corning-Painted Post (N.Y.) Area School District received its first Propane-Powered Vision school bus last week. The event marked the inaugural delivery of the bus in the state. Three additional units are scheduled for delivery in October.

Roger Howsmon, chief marketing officer and senior vice president of sales for Blue Bird said, “The benefits of propane-powered technology are being realized from coast to coast. Right now, school districts are looking at ways to save money, and our Propane-Powered Visions have saved school districts across the country tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars."

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