Schools’ gas costs surge |

Schools’ gas costs surge

Matt Terrell
Vail, CO Colorado

EAGLE COUNTY, Colorado ” It will cost a lot more to bus children to and from school this year, but parents shouldn’t expect any changes in bus service because of high gas prices.

The school district has budgeted around $215,000 for fuel for the 2008-2009 school year, a 20 percent increase over last year.

Since budget preparation began in February, when fuel was cheaper, the school district doesn’t know if $215,000 will be enough, too much or just right. It was a best guess, and school districts are allowed to adjust their budget later in the year, said Phil Onofrio, chief financial officer for the school district.

“We don’t know if we have enough in there. We’ll find out,” Onofrio said. “They’re headed down at the moment, but that could change.”

Parents though shouldn’t worry that high gas prices will lead to a decrease in bus service. Getting kids to school will of course be a priority, Onofrio said.

“The school district has enough resources,” Onofrio said. “We can absorb the cost of higher gas prices.”

Gas costs aren’t a large percentage of the overall transportation budget, which is $2.2 million. They’re still significant though, and the school district will be watching them closely, Onofrio said.

Staff Writer Matt Terrell can be reached at 970-748-2955 or

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