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Fuel costs impact school budgets positively

With fuel prices at significantly lower costs, local school districts are seeing cost savings compared to 2013-2014. PR-B's transportation budget reported $70,305.19 in fuel costs in Feb. 2014, whereas Feb. 2015 reported $60,004.62. A look at the...

With fuel prices at significantly lower costs, local school districts are seeing cost savings compared to 2013-2014.

PR-B's transportation budget reported $70,305.19 in fuel costs in Feb. 2014, whereas Feb. 2015 reported $60,004.62. A look at the overall utility costs shows an even bigger savings.

"Bus garage gas/diesel expenses dropped by $10,301 and overall utilities are $14,478 below this time last year," said Pine River-Backus Business Manager Jolene Bengtson. "The drop in transportation fuel has been a big savings for us. We still have a lot of winter left but hopefully we see the utilities costs stay below last year's costs as well."

Pequot Lakes is also anticipating a significant savings, though specific numbers are not yet available.

"In that particular line item on our budget, we are significantly underspent from what we budgeted. We use trend data, obviously, to set those kinds of budget line items, and if you look at our fuel costs a year ago - and we budgeted expecting those numbers - we had more there than we are going to spend this year," said Pequot Lakes Superintendent Chris Lindholm. "This is a great problem to have. We'll hopefully be able to use that to set us up for things we need to purchase that we have not."

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Considering the length and unpredictable nature of the typical Minnesota winter, the overall savings to district budgets may change, but the schools consider current savings to be significant.

Related Topics: PEQUOT LAKES
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