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Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday signed Senate Bill 81, which restores funding for home-to-school transportation for the 2011-12 fiscal year.Photo by Wikipedia user Coolcaesar
Funding restored for Calif. school transportation
February 14, 2012
Gov. Jerry Brown on Friday signed Senate Bill 81, which replaces the $248 million that was cut for the service with an across-the-board revenue limit reduction at all school districts in the state for the 2011-12 fiscal year. Mike Rea of the California Association of School Transportation Officials tells SBF this is welcome news, but he notes that more work must be done to restore funding for the long term, and he shares the association’s efforts to this end.
Zonar's ZTrak locates, tracks assets
February 14, 2012
The company's new solution provides accurate location data in a one-location-per-day cycle, officials say. Zonar leveraged the same HD GPS and cellular technology used in its fleet telematics platform to track non-vehicle items.
Last year, Norman Public Schools students honored bus drivers and monitors by spelling "We love the bus" with Styrofoam cups on a fence where the buses pull up to a school.
Okla. district to celebrate Love the Bus with hockey
February 14, 2012
Christy Clemons, assistant director of transportation for Norman Public Schools, partners with the Oklahoma City Barons hockey team and the Oklahoma Association for Pupil Transportation to put on "Love the Bus Hockey Night" to honor bus drivers and monitors. Clemons tells SBF she hopes the event will inspire other districts in the state to celebrate Love the Bus month.
Riteway Bus founder Roland Bast passes
February 13, 2012
The longtime school bus contractor — as well as farmer and auctioneer — was regarded for his dedication to his employees and customers. He launched Riteway Bus in 1957 with four school buses that cost about $5,000 each.
Mesa Public Schools reports savings of about 25.1 cents per mile for the propane Micro Bird Type A school buses it began running last fall.
Ariz. district sees success with propane buses
February 13, 2012
Mesa Public Schools reports savings of about 25.1 cents per mile for the propane Micro Bird Type A school buses it began running last fall. In April, the district will take delivery of six propane Blue Bird Type Cs.
NAPT offers group membership option
February 13, 2012
Association officials say that under the group pricing model, school bus drivers can get $10,000 of accidental death and dismemberment insurance coverage and office staff can participate in NAPT web seminars and network with peers in other states and countries. In addition, Professional Development Series courses and NAPT Summit registration are available at reduced rates.
Tags: NAPT
Industry touts its successes for Love the Bus
February 9, 2012
School transportation operations and organizations will hold events on or around Valentine's Day to promote the benefits of the yellow bus and to honor bus drivers.
Thomas Built Buses is adding 50 new line positions and increasing production levels in response to large orders from the state of North Carolina and other customers.
Thomas Built again steps up production, staff
February 9, 2012
The school bus manufacturer adds 50 new line positions and increases production levels in response to large orders from the state of North Carolina and other customers. The company also expands its field sales and service teams, releases results of a fuel economy test and earns an environmental award.
Rotary mobile lift features operator-friendly design
February 9, 2012
The company's latest addition to its line of mobile column lifts, the RCH4, also features an automatic steering system, which makes it faster and easier to position the columns for service, officials say. Each column is identical and has a rated capacity of 18,000 pounds, for total lifting capacity of up to 144,000 pounds.
School bus documentary to premiere at film festival
February 9, 2012
"La Camioneta: The Journey of One American School Bus," will premiere as an official selection at the 2012 SXSW Film Festival in Austin, Texas, in March. The film follows a retired school bus on its journey from an auction in Pennsylvania to a highland town outside of Guatemala City.
Mo. bill would allow school bus ads
February 9, 2012
The legislation would require the state board of education to establish rules to authorize school boards to lease advertising space on the interior and exterior of buses. The bill specifies what types of ads are not appropriate, and 50 percent of a district's revenue from advertising would need to be used to offset the fuel costs of providing pupil transportation services.
A bill that would have affected contracted school bus drivers' ability to collect unemployment benefits died in the Pennsylvania General Assembly after its sponsor withdrew his name from the legislation. Photo by Wikipedia user Niagara
Contracted Pa. bus drivers still eligible for jobless benefits
February 9, 2012
School bus drivers in the state who work for private companies can continue to collect unemployment during the summer break in between school years after a bill that would have amended this law has died in the General Assembly — the bill’s sponsor has withdrawn his name from the legislation. Selina Pittenger, executive director of the Pennsylvania School Bus Association, discusses with SBF the association’s efforts to prevent the bill from progressing.
Thomas Built recognized for environmental performance
February 8, 2012
The school bus manufacturer is named a 2011 Environmental Steward by the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Among the reasons for Thomas Built receiving the award, officials say, is the High Point facility’s commitment to continue to reduce waste even after achieving its zero waste-to-landfill goal through a waste-to-energy plan.
EPA, CARB certify Cummins' new school bus ratings
February 7, 2012
Officials say the engine manufacturer will begin production of the new ratings for its ISB6.7 unit this month. The new ratings for the ISB6.7 are certified at 0.20g oxides of nitrogen per brake horsepower (hp) hour without the use of emissions credits, and they include offerings of 220 hp with 520 lb.-ft. of torque and 250 hp with 660 lb.-ft. of torque.
Tags: engines, EPA
Goodyear introduces Dunlop steer tire
February 7, 2012
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.'s new Dunlop SP348, an all-position steer tire for regional fleet, school bus, and pickup and delivery applications, is available in seven sizes. Features include a deep tread, a rugged casing design and enhanced shoulder rib for improved scrub resistance.
Tags: tires
Woman charged in assault on bus driver
February 6, 2012
A 40-year-old woman allegedly threatens another woman, a Kuna (Idaho) School District bus driver, with a loaded gun and sprays her with pepper spray in the district parking lot. Two transportation employees reportedly step in to take the gun and separate the two women, who are said to be friends.
New state director appointed in N.Y.
February 6, 2012
Mary Faherty Sansaricq succeeds Marion Edick, who recently retired from her post as director of pupil transportation services. Officials say Sansaricq has more than 20 years’ experience as an educator and administrator, during which time she served in the New York State Education Department’s Pupil Transportation Unit and Office of Educational Management Services, among other work.
Tags: New York
SafeGuard’s  XChange seating products, which can be switched from standard to lap-shoulder belts or integrated child seats, will soon be standard on all Collins, Mid Bus and Corbeil buses.
Collins makes XChange seats standard
February 6, 2012
SafeGuard’s XChange seating products, which can be switched from standard to lap-shoulder belts or integrated child seats, will soon be standard on all Collins, Mid Bus and Corbeil buses.
Calif. agency to award $1M in grants for alt-fuel bus projects
February 6, 2012
Of the $1 million, $496,696 will go to Kings Canyon Unified School District in Reedley, and the rest will go to the San Diego Air Pollution Control District as part of the California Air Resources Board’s Advanced Technology Demonstration Project initiative. Kings Canyon’s grant money will fund two eTrans all-electric school buses, which will be among the buses the district loans out for trial operation at other school districts.
Man who longed to be a bus driver gets unexpected gift
February 6, 2012
Joey Moravchik, 40, is unable to become a school bus driver because he is developmentally disabled. His brother, Jeff, purchases a newly retired bus from Lake Shore Buses in Ashland, Wis., and surprises Moravchik with it on Christmas.

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