Oologah School Board members approved a bond resolution at a special meeting last month.
The board voted to put a $400,000 transportation bond on the March 5 ballot. The bonds will have to pass with a 60 percent supermajority.
Superintendent Rob Armstrong said the bond package would not affect millage rates or raise property taxes. He said Oologah’s millage rate would remain at 13.63 mills.
“We have to address our transportation needs and improve the age of our fleet,” Armstrong said. “We need to retire some buses and get some on the road with less mileage and less maintenance.”
The board voted to hire Stephen H. McDonald & Associates as financial advisors for the district. Tom Frazier with Stephen H. McDonald told the board consistent growth in ad valorem taxes has increased the district’s bonding capacity.
Armstrong said the bond money will be used to buy new buses and possibly new Chevy Suburbans. He said the number and type of vehicles haven’t been determined yet. Armstrong said the district may look at buying a new bus for students with disabilities.
Assistant superintendent Jerry Rutledge told the board a new bus costs approximately $100,000. He said the district still has seven 1991 model buses. One of those buses is still used on a daily route.
Armstrong said one problem the school is having is the availability of buses for extracurricular activities. He said some school groups have to wait for buses to complete daily routes. The school tries to avoid using higher mileage buses for longer trips.
“We want to feel comfortable putting kids on those buses and a 1991 model has years of service on it,” Armstrong said.