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Published: Friday, 5/3/2013

Shrinking TARTA agrees to sell 11 buses

Surplus vehicles go to SW Ohio


The Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority has agreed to sell 11 surplus buses to a transit agency in southwestern Ohio.

The 11 Thomas buses built in 2003 are no longer needed because of TARTA’s reduced operations after Toledo Public Schools eliminated much of its student transportation contract because of budget cuts, Controller Stacy Clink explained Thursday to the authority’s board of trustees.

The buses will be sold to the Butler County Regional Transit Authority, based in Hamilton, Ohio, which recently won a contract to provide transit service to Miami University in nearby Oxford, Ms. Clink said.

TARTA bought the buses using primarily federal funds, and Federal Transit Administration policies encourage such transfers of surplus vehicles. The transit authority will be paid $2,261.05 for the amortized value of the local share of the vehicles’ original purchase price, and will be reimbursed for repairs to the buses needed to make them roadworthy for Butler County.

The buses, which all have about 300,000 miles on their odometers, are part of a 38-vehicle fleet the transit authority acquired in 2003, of which 21 are still in use by TARTA and three are leased to Sandusky Transit, said James Gee, TARTA’s general manager. The remaining three were retired after crashes, he said.

TARTA now has 96 buses in its active fleet, down from 166 five years ago, Mr. Gee said. Besides an 82 percent reduction in its school-related routes, he said, the authority has reduced its fleet because of budget-related route cuts, improved scheduling, and Perrysburg’s withdrawal from TARTA.

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