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Holmen district replacing current buses with ones powered by propane

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A new expenditure with the Holmen School District might be saving some money in the long run.

The district has decided to replace its fleet of diesel run buses with propane ones, though it’ll take awhile to replace them all.

“It has to be a specific bus, it’s not just something you can convert,” Transportation Supervisor Beth Hobbs said. “So, we started purchasing them a year and a half ago — a couple a year.”

There are 30 buses in the fleet right now. Hobbs said any hesitation they had about the decision has left with how the service in the last few months has been running.

“We were worried about the mileage but that seems to be doing just fine with the lower costs that we’re paying with propane,” she said. “So, it evens out that way.”

Hobbs says they also don’t have to worry about the buses freezing up and not starting in the cold temperatures.

“Those are the busses that start right up, they don’t have to be plugged in overnight like we do the diesel fuel to keep them from getting cold and freezing,” Hobbs said. “Ours popped right off when it was really cold.”

Hobbs added that there will be $56,000 in savings for every bus, over the course of its life.

Born in Decorah Iowa. I've been a news reporter for the last 10 years, starting right out of college in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Other professional opportunities led me to Marshalltown, Iowa and Antigo Wisconsin, before I finally was afforded the opportunity here in La Crosse. I've been here since 2016. I also act as the voice of local sports, doing play by play of high school and college football and basketball. When not working I enjoy golfing.

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