City won’t pur­chase elec­tric bus this time around

Kenora Daily Miner and News - - LOCAL NEWS - KATH­LEEN CHARLEBOIS KCharlebois@postmedia.com

It’ll be an­other five years un­til the city needs to pur­chase a new tran­sit bus, and the mayor said he hopes a greener op­tion will be fea­si­ble at that time.

Coun­cil voted unan­i­mously in favour of a straight­foward bud­get item - the pur­chase of a new tran­sit bus - at the spe­cial meet­ing of coun­cil on Tues­day, Nov. 7.

The 2017 El­do­rado tran­sit bus, which costs $496,212 and will be funded through the Ded­i­cated Gas Tax Funds for pub­lic trans­porta­tion with a 2018 de­liv­ery date.

Mayor of Kenora Dave Can­field said he was “a lit­tle sad” that the pur­chase was of a con­ven­tional diesel bus rather than an elec­tric one, which he had brought up in dis­cus­sion at a num­ber of meet­ings in the last few months.

“I would have liked to see an elec­tric bus, but un­for­tu­nately they’re just not read­ily avail­able right now be­cause they are fairly new,” he said. “I’m think­ing in four or five years when we’re ready for the next one, we’ll be good for an elec­tric bus, and we’ll do some re­search be­tween now and then to make sure there is one avail­able for us.”

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port pre­sented to coun­cil, the City pur­chases a new tran­sit bus ev­ery five years and re­tires the old­est bus in the fleet. The new tran­sit bus will be part of the 2018 cap­i­tal bud­get, and the pur­chase or­der must be sent to the bus man­u­fac­turer now.

Al­though elec­tric buses are more ex­pen­sive to pur­chase than their diesel equiv­a­lent, Can­field said the cost of run­ning an elec­tric bus is “dra­mat­i­cally re­duced.”

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