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City bus service for school pushed back to November

The Dickinson Public School board is still looking to bring in new in-city bus routes for the next school year, but not on the timeline it had originally anticipated.

Despite a push to try to get routes set for the beginning of the school year, Superintendent Doug Sullivan told the budget committee Wednesday, following a meeting with bus provider Harlow’s, that he decided “the schedule was a little too fast.

“If we roll this out, we don’t want it to be a mess,” he said.

A new target date has been set for Nov. 3 to implement bus service, giving the board two extra months to resolve some complications, including a high number of students who live in one attendance area but attend school in another.

Sullivan requested public input in May to gauge interest in adding bus routes and said he received about 125 responses, most of them in favor of using buses.

A tentative $50,000 for bus service is included in the 2014-2015 budget.

“We’re continuing to look at what’s in place,” Sullivan said.

Budget committee chair Leslie Ross said she agreed with Sullivan’s decision to push back the start date.

“You just don’t want it to go out and be a bad product to start with,” she said. “If slowing down makes a difference, then absolutely that’s what we need to do.”

Sullivan said that if service is still not ready by Nov. 3, the schedule will be adjusted again “so that we’re not putting out something that’s going to cause a lot of frustrations.”

Faulx is a reporter at The Dickinson Press. To contact her call 701-456-1207. Tweet her at NadyaFaulx.