LEUSD approves limited bus service thru December

Credit: Georgia Zermeno

It looks like school buses will be rolling after all on August 13. The LEUSD governing board voted 3-0 on Monday, July 30, to provide limited bus service to remote areas until December 2012.

"The direction has always been to find funding," says LEUSD Facilities and Operation Director Greg Bowers. Greg addressed the LEUSD supervisors and the more than 100 people who attended the meeting, stating that a long-term solution is still being reviewed. He said he hopes the temporary solution takes stress off of concerned parents.

President Susan E. Scott added, “Listening to community concerns, we believe transporting students who live in remote areas is the priority need.".

Special Education transportation was not affected by the February decision, and will continue for qualified students, based on their IEP.

Approximately $350,000 in one-time unrestricted general fund revenue is available to restore limited busing during the first semester of school. Funding would come from a vacancy in the Assistant Superintendent of Student Support Services position that will remain unfilled, and restructuring a copier and printer lease agreement.

The staff presentation estimated 2,073 students could be served using 12 bus drivers and 12 clean-burning CNG buses on an interim basis. After the board discussion, a motion was made to approve the plan with additional routes to the Clinton Keith area, bringing total ridership to nearly 2,200 students. The vote was 3-0; members Crippen and Thomas were absent.

Geographically remote areas are defined as those with extraordinary topography, traffic conditions and/or long distances that preclude walking or bicycling to school.

Canyon Lake is listed as a geographically remote area and had 611 K-12 student riders registered last year. Bus passes are now on sale for $175 on a first come, first served basis. Residents can call the transportation department for information at 253-7830.