The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


September 19, 2013

Central mulls over closing Low Moor bus stop

DEWITT — The DeWitt Central School Board discussed closing off the bus stop in Low Moor to outside districts at a meeting Saturday.

The Camanche district has used the stop for as many as 20 years. According to Camanche Superintendent Tom Parker, the number of students open enrolling to Camanche includes 10 families with 19 students who are transported. DeWitt Superintendent Dan Peterson said this needs to stop but difficulties arise after so many years. If it is changed, families should be notified.

He said the district needs to address closing its borders as surrounding districts have.

Board member Jim Irwin said he was inclined to let the busing continue until the end of this school year and noted about $114,000 in funding lost for those open enrolled students. He also said originally there was no blacktop to Camanche and students generally are open enrolled for parents’ convenience.

Steve Fuglsang said the district should do “what is legal” as well as recognize choice and safety of students. Other board members agreed the busing arrangement should be curtailed.

Peterson also noted that Camanche had never filled out the required form (with renewal every year) for the busing. He said involved parents would be sent a notification letter that the district is considering the situation. To better receive input from district residents, the October board meeting will be held at the Low Moor Community Center.

After reviewing election results, Central Community School Board business director Tina Bartels swore in returning board member Steve Fuglsang with 159 votes and new board member Angela Rheingans with 146 votes.

The recent election was uncontested.

In the retiring board meeting, Bartels also presented the year-end financial report. She said yearly revenue exceeded expenditures by $360,000 and the district’s solvency ratio was up to 6.47 with a goal of 7. The ratio indicates the district’s ability to pay its bills. Bartels added the unspent balance has dropped some because of lost enrollment.

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