The McDuffie County school system will have four new buses in their fleet soon.
Contracts for four new buses were awarded to Nalley Motor Trucks at a total price of $251,161.40. The board decided to award the bid for the four 66-passenger buses to Nalley Motor Trucks because the company gave a bid on the specific engine identified in the bid, the warranty issue was addressed, replacement parts are readily available, and many replacement parts are already in stock at the school system's bus barn, according to Dr. Jim Franklin, McDuffie County assistant superintendent for administrative services.
The Board also considered bids from Atlanta Freightliner and National Bus Sales.
In other action, the board selected Logical Systems to replace a faulty network switch at the central office for $44,017.
For several months, the faulty switch had caused network failures, computer problems and telephone problems, said Bob Weems, technical director for schools. The school system borrowed a switch to help alleviate problems, and voted Jan. 13 to replace that switch. A new switch is necessary for upgrading electronics for future voice data and video communications.
"We want to replace the switch to take us up to a new level of technology," he said at a school board planning session.
The switch could help with a mobile transmission program and may also help with new e-learning programs. It also will lead to a savings of $1,000 per month on current phone bills and will offer some extra features not currently available such as caller ID, he said.
"We will save on telephone expenses and get twice as much service," he said.
Initially, the switch will be paid for by SPLOST funds, although the school system has applied for a grant thorough e-rate totaling $227,000 to eventually replace all network switches in the system.
The Board considered bids to replace the faulty switch at the central office from Infinity Network Solutions ($69,359) and Computerland Advanced Technology Group ($68,499).