School to purchase new vehicles for fleet

By Shanna Cummings

The school district is beefing up the transportation fleet.

Board members approved purchase of six new vehicles to update the district’s transportation fleet. The new vehicles, including two vans, two minibuses, a handicapped-accessible bus, and an equipped maintenance truck, replace existing high-mileage or maintenance-heavy vehicles, or offer more flexible use. The current budget includes $275,000 for this purpose. The replaced vehicles will be repurposed.

“What we’re doing is, we’re going through and cleaning up our entire fleet, so that no matter what happens in the future, you have now got an updated fleet,” district superintendent Ken Baugh explained. “We’re just doing it while the money’s there while we can.”

The minibuses will feature professional logo paint jobs. The vans and minibuses do not require a CDL license, meaning anyone with a valid driver’s license can operate them.

A bus purchased last year arrived in September.

F. A. T. System

Board members approved $56,000 for installation of the Fully Automated Timing system purchased for the track. Once installed, the system will handle and display times and distances for shot put, discus, long jump and triple jump events.

Quarterly reports

The district’s fourth-quarter investment report showed $3.8 million in checking and $11.2 million in Maintenance and Operations fund balance. Baugh said the district will also see an additional $600,000 from the state due to attendance numbers. He also explained how the district would seek the fastest way to pay off a new bond, should the board choose to move forward with a bond in the future. 

Baugh also explained the first and second quarterly reports from the Van Horn Education Fund (VHEF), which pays for student fees and supplies for the early college programs. The fund saw 8 percent growth in the first quarter. He explained there was one month the fund investment lost $2,500 but later saw “tens and tens and tens of thousands of dollars” put back in. Second-quarter saw more donations, and earnings increased 23 percent.

“There won’t always be these great big giant numbers, because it will level more, and they will not be able to make the play on the markets that they can make this quarter,” he added.

He said the VHEF recently received a donation from Target for $67,000, the last of three yearly donations.

Other business

  • Approval of a $1,200 staff extra duty pay resolution
  • Selection of participants for Culberson County Appraisal District Board
  • Approval of Amendment Application for Agreement for Value Limitation for IP Aragorn and IP Titan, as construction will not be finished on schedule.
  • The Halloween Carnival will take place on Oct. 30; location to be announced later.