The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Local Education

November 6, 2013

Anderson, Elwood schools 'not discussing' no buses

ANDERSON — A day after Muncie voters voted down a referendum to keep their busing system, the superintendents of Anderson and Elwood Community Schools both said that is not on their schools' horizon.

"We're not having discussions about that at this time," Tim Edsell, interim superintendent of Anderson Community schools, said. "Our transportation system will not be shutting down any time soon."

This comes after voters in Muncie voted against a referendum that would have raised property taxes and kept the school buses operational. The Muncie school system needed the extra money from the tax to keep the buses running, but voters chose instead to eliminate transportation, according to the Muncie Star Press.

It is a plight both Edsell and Elwood Community Schools Superintendent Tim Smith sympathize with.

"It (lack of funding for transportation) is hitting everybody right now," Smith said. "There are lots of different things districts have tried."

Smith said Elwood is not talking about ending its transportation right now. He said they are always looking at the budgets and talking about what could happen. He said everything hinges on the amount of federal and state funding received.

"Right now our budget is sustainable," Smith said. "We don't have any burning issues that would force us to make those kinds of decisions."

Edsell said transportation budgets for schools have been tight statewide for everyone. That particular budget for Anderson schools is something that gets looked at continuously.

Edsell said he wasn't sure how Muncie would deal with the no-bus system but said it is a problem Anderson won't have to deal with for the next couple years at least.

The Muncie Community Schools was asking for more than $3 million for the 2014 school year in order to keep the transportation running. They have a fleet of 10 school-owned buses and have a contract with the M&M bus company for their daily busing, according to the Star Press.

Follow Zach Osowski on Twitter @Osowski_THB or call 640-4847.

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