The Missouri Propane Education & Research Council (MOPERC), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to propane education and public awareness, has awarded Liberty Public Schools a check for $20,000 for its purchase of 10 new Blue Bird propane autogas school buses.
The emissions- and cost-reducing propane school buses are currently in service for the district’s daily and activity routes, which have decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“By choosing propane buses, we are seeing dramatic cost savings,” says Jeff Baird, transportation director for Liberty Public Schools. “Money saved in transportation becomes available for other education expenses related to the classroom. Taking care of our students’ needs is the top priority because they’ve sacrificed so much during the pandemic – our propane buses help us do that.”
Baird heard about the benefits other school districts in the area experienced after switching to propane school buses. Liberty Public Schools’ most recent diesel price is $1.86 per gallon, while locked in at $0.79 per gallon for propane. He says the district expects to cut its fuel costs by 35% on propane buses.
The rebate presented to the school district is part of MOPERC’s Clean Bus Replacement Plan, which has committed $1 million to help Missouri school districts transition from diesel to propane buses. The plan offers rebates of $2,000 per propane bus, up to 10 per district, at the time of delivery.
Liberty Public Schools, which received its new buses in early January, is in the process of installing an on-site fuel station with an 18,000-gallon tank.