EXCESS FUNDS FROM FY 14 ALLOCATION INCREASE OPPORTUNITIES FOR SCHOOL BUS REPLACEMENT FUNDING IN MISSOURI AND THREE SURROUNDING STATES
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that funds will again be available for school bus replacements this fall. This is the second time EPA will open the DERA School Bus Replacement Rebate Program. In 2012, EPA launched a pilot rebate program with $2 million in funding and gave rebates to 28 recipients to help replace more than 80 school buses.
EPA anticipates awarding $3 million in rebate funds to public and private school bus fleet owners. Recipients will be chosen by a lottery system.
EPA Region 7 consists of the states of Missouri, Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska. Region 7 is in a unique situation. Because the Region did not receive enough applications to award all of our FY14 funds through the DERA National Competition Program the Region has over $700,000 in rebates for “Region 7 only” public and private school bus fleet owners. Those applicants not selected in the preliminary Region 7 lottery will be entered in the national rebate lottery and compete for the $3 million with fleet owners from across the nation.
This is a great opportunity for Region 7 schools. Using the “Region 7 only” money we anticipate being able to replace 28 - 30 older school buses, reducing diesel emissions and improving the health and environment of communities throughout the 4 state area.
Applications for both the “Region 7 only” rebates and the national rebates will be taken by EPA Headquarters, between October 15, 2014 and November 17, 2014.
Information on eligibility and the application pertaining to the 2014 School Bus Rebate Program will be posted beginning Wednesday, October 15, 2014 at: http://www.epa.gov/cleandiesel/dera-rebate-schoolbus14.htm
For further information, you may contact:
Greg H. Crable
US EPA Region 7
11201 Renner Blvd.
Lenexa, Kansas 66219
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CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL SAFETY WILL CONTINUE TO OPERATE DESPITE LOSS OF FEDERAL FUNDING
In an email dated May 28, Gary Moore of the Center for Educational Safety in Jefferson City told M.A.P.T. Executive Director Shirley Francis that CES "will be in operation past August 31, 2014. The federal funding expired; however funds were dedicated by the legislatures to keep CES alive." Moore also said that school districts across Missouri can now start booking the Active Shooter presentation if they so desire.
For additional information, contact Gary Moore, Center for Educational Safety, 200 Madison Street, Jefferson City, MO 65109 (573) 638-7501 ext. 415
You can email Gary at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their web site at www.moces.org
On January 18, 2011, a 6-year-old Callaway County, Missouri boy was run over and killed by his own school bus after getting off the bus at his home. A Missouri State Highway Patrol report on the accident concluded that the bus driver did not wait long enough after the student got off to clear the area around the bus before he set the bus in motion again.
One year to the day after the accident, the 78-year-old bus driver, who had pled guilty two months earlier to second degree involuntary manslaughter, was sentenced to four years in prison. However, the judge suspended the sentence, and placed the driver on five years' probation. He cannot drive any vehicle, let alone a school bus, and must perform 100 hours of community service, speaking to area bus drivers about school bus safety. The victim's grief-stricken parents did not want to see the driver spend time behind bars. Instead, they wanted to use the tragedy to educate bus drivers and riders on the potential hazzards so that no other family would have to suffer the loss of a child. Members of the victim's family said the case was not about revenge, but about preventing something like this from happening again.
The Missouri Association for Pupil Transportation (M.A.P.T.) in cooperation with the Missouri School Boards Association (MSBA) has produced a video about the North Calloway accident, entitled "DRIVING DISTRACTED...and then it happened."
M.A.P.T. wishes to thank the MSBA for allowing us to post a link to the video, as a means of educating school bus professionals and the general public of the possible tragic consequences of distraced driving.
To view the video, click here