West New York approved a $100,000 shared services agreement with the board of education in order to provide another bus route for students that have been transferred from Harry L. Bain Elementary School to St. Joseph of the Palisades (5401 Broadway). However, Superintendent of Schools John Fauta said that isn’t nearly enough money to provide buses to all the students in need.
Responding to a parents request for an update on the situation, Town Counsel Donald Scarinci explained that the board has just effectively allocated $100,000 to the board of ed since “the municipality has to do something, even if the school board superintendent chooses to do nothing. ”
He also noted that Fauta planned to keep students in a “wraparound program,” in which the $100,000 would go towards after- school programs for students, which would allow parents to pick them up in the evening hours.
Fauta said that based on preliminary research conducted by the BOE, paying for buses, drivers and liability insurance for each vehicle could run a bill anywhere between $400,000 to $700,000.
While he did not mention the employee by name, Fauta also said “the town attorney” committed an ethics violation by contacting members of his staff on the bus issue without his consent.
Finally, Fauta revealed that a shared services agreement between the town and the BOE that provides busing for the waterfront cost about $16,000 last year – which the town is yet to reimburse the board of education for.