Perdue to help with school fuel - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Perdue to help with school fuel

January 19, 2006

Thomasville, Georgia-- Governor Sonny Perdue is helping offset the cost of rising fuel prices for Georgia's school systems. He has allocated $10 million  to help cover the cost.

Thomas County school bus maintenance supervisor, Isaac Holt, has a big responsibility each day. "Our main purpose is safety and to make sure the students have a safe ride and get home safely," says Holt.

That includes making sure each of Thomas County's 75 buses are fueled up each day. Governor Sonny Perdue has ensured that by earmarking $10 million  to help offset rising gas prices for Georgia schools.

"He's going to allocate maybe five million this year and five million next year," says School Operations Director, Dennis Cain.

If Thomas County's buses stay on track, they'll be about $50,000 over this year's fuel budget. Whether the new money will cover all that... "We haven't gotten any particulars as far as how much money we'll receive, when we'll receive it," says Cain.

With a 100 gallon tank, it costs an average of $200.00 to fill up a school bus. Thomas County's school buses travel about 3,000 miles a day. And at an average cost of $2.00 a gallon for diesel fuel, that means Thomas County's school system spends about $600.00 a day on gas.

"We just hope the Governor considers the rural counties because we have so many miles," says Cain. But if you're mad over the state spending more money, keep in mind, the children transported today, may make tomorrow's decisions. "As long as we keep that going, I think everybody's happy," says Holt. At least through fiscal year '07.

Cain says the biggest hit Thomas County's school gas budget took was because of Hurricane Katrina. The highest the system paid for diesel was $2.78 a gallon.

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