School bus ads: Better than school bus fees?
For a second year, Florida lawmakers will consider allowing school districts to sell ads on school buses as a revenue enhancer during tough economic times. Some school districts already have begun looking into the options while awaiting action.
To help the Legislature ponder the issue, OPPAGA has issued a report examining how other states tackle this issue. It finds that five states allow ads on the insides of buses (24 prohibit it), and 10 states permit ads on the outsides of buses (34 bar it).
More prevalent, the agency observes, is charging parents a fee for student bus rides. Twelve states allow such charges while one -- Hawaii -- mandates it.
We've heard this discussion come up in local board rooms, including Hillsborough. But often it gets batted down as unfair to one group or another. Wealthy parents might pay extra for the service, for instance, while struggling families might not be able to afford needed rides.
Florida has no statutory position on charging bus fees. Should it?
(Times file photo)