TAMPA, Fla. — Hillsborough County Public Schools can now fuel its growing fleet of propane school buses at its own facility.
The district has installed a new propane fueling station. Previously, the district’s 50 propane school buses were fueled at a county propane filling station. The switch to the new on-site fueling station is expected to save time for the school bus drivers while saving money for the district.
Hillsborough County Public Schools recently ordered an additional 40 propane school buses. The district said that, on average, it is paying 40% to 50% less for propane than for diesel. Also, less maintenance is required on the propane buses, according to Hillsborough.
The district is hoping to capitalize on a grant from the Florida Department of Agriculture. The Natural Gas Fuel Fleet Vehicle Rebate provides up to $25,000 per natural gas fleet vehicle purchased or leased for a minimum of five years. Florida has earmarked $2.4 million for both the 2016-17 and 2017-18 fiscal years. Applicants can receive up to a total of $250,000 per fiscal year.