Friday, February 12, 2010

School biodiesel plan back on hold

District still favors locating tank at bus garage


By TERRY SMITH
Express Staff Writer

A controversial plan regarding placement of a Blaine County School District biodiesel storage tank is on hold again.

District Business Manager Mike Chatterton sought school board approval Tuesday evening to accept bids for a tank, but the issue was tabled.

Board Chair Julie Dahlgren explained at the meeting that the issue was being put on hold because of a school district commitment made last fall for a six-month delay regarding the tank proposal.

"We don't have a pinpointed date, but we think it was early October and we'd like to honor that six-month think-period of time," Dahlgren said.

A commitment for a six-month delay on the tank proposal was made to the Idaho Mountain Express in an interview with District Superintendent Lonnie Barber on Oct. 7. A story about the delay was published in the Express on Oct. 9.

The district plan is to purchase a 12,000-gallon biodiesel tank for the district's bus fleet and to place the tank at the bus garage on Fox Acres Road near Wood River High School.

Barber said Thursday that placement of the tank at the bus garage is still the district's preferred option.

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"We've looked at this thing and we've looked at this thing," Barber said. "And we actually do believe that reducing the number of bus trips into town and back down Fox Acres Lane is a very good thing. We do believe that the fleet should be fueled where they live at the bus barn.

"I think that we probably would have moved forward at the Tuesday night meeting—however, a small group came forward and said, 'Hey, well, you said six months and we've only been here five months,' or something like that."

Barber noted that district officials held a second public meeting on the proposal in December but that public turnout was "sparse."

Terry Smith: tsmith@mtexpress.com




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