School Board moves to purchase 10 new buses

By Joseph Back
Posted 7/3/24

New buses will be on their way to Stanley-Boyd, pending some details. Meeting on Monday June 24 at its regular board meeting, the Stanley-Boyd Area School Board moved to approve the purchase of eight …

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School Board moves to purchase 10 new buses


New buses will be on their way to Stanley-Boyd, pending some details.
Meeting on Monday June 24 at its regular board meeting, the Stanley-Boyd Area School Board moved to approve the purchase of eight new buses, as well as amend a motion from last June with regard to two buses not on schedule, replacing them with comparable ones and moving their purchase to the fiscal year begun July 1. The district received $800,000 in high cost transportation aid at the end of the last fiscal year to help with bus purchases.
Before the school board approved eight new buses for this year, however, District Superintendent Jeff Koenig explained the need for an amended motion on two buses from last year.
“In June of last year the Board approved the purchase of two Thomas buses from Nelson Bus Service” Koenig said. “And they approved the first of eight buses from Ascendance, which used to be Midstate. What happened is that all bus manufacturers had something where they basically stopped and shut down their lines this year, so they’re all very behind their schedule.” With the two Thomas buses not scheduled to be built until January as a result, this affected the fiscal year the buses would be paid for by the district and also messed up the bus rotation. With a company named Ascendance already providing eight other buses for the present fiscal year and able to provide comparable buses in place of the two Thomas buses from Nelson, a switch out was in order.
““Ascendance found two buses they’re willing to sell us,” Koenig said, adding the buses were IC brand. “They’re similar in build.”
The end result of the amended motion as presented was that the two buses first approved in 2023 would move to the fiscal year starting July 1, each one costing $128,600, or $257,539 together after title and license fees. Before the board approved an amended motion on the two buses school board member Lanse Carlson asked more details.
“Are they the same capacity and same fuel type?” He asked.
“I think a couple of them might be 75 but I can’t remember the configuration on them,” Support Services staff Jamie Dusick shared. The buses would also not be electric, as it was still too early to qualify for a grant on these. As for build, there was one additional detail: not snub nose, as these required a pit to be worked on that the district didn’t have.
Made in two steps to follow Robert’s Rules of Order, the purchase of two buses was approved.
Motion to move the bus purchases from fiscal year 2023-24 to fiscal year 2024-25 was made by board member Chad Verbeten and seconded by Bob Geist, being approved unanimously. From there it was on to the second motion, approving the bus purchase itself. With motion by Geist seconded by board member Toni Seidl, the two buses were approved.
Moving from the amended purchase to current items, the board approved eight 2026 IC Next Gen buses from Ascendance, each capable of carrying 72 passengers with air brakes and air ride. With the eight buses each costing an estimated $133,900 individually or $1,071,200 together, motion to approve the purchases was made by board president Denise Hoffstatter and seconded by Becky Peterson.
In other news from the June school board meeting, the board approved a change order on roof replacement to rebuild 1500 foot of roof edge, the amount not to exceed $55,806. The district is currently on its last roof update, the overlapping roof work from past years being cut out and replaced with new surface. Motion to approve the roof change order was made by Verbeten and seconded by Seidl.
The board also took up the first reading of its NEOLA policy update, to be adopted next month with Title IX changes at the federal level. The board also reviewed and approved SL3 Staff Hiring and Treatment, SL4 Employee Compensation, and SL5 Employee ovulation, finding the district in compliance on all three items.
The next board conversation is July 15, with regular board meetings held the fourth Monday of the month in the high school library.