Kaine visits Lynchburg to discuss federal funds going toward electric school buses

Published: Feb. 22, 2023 at 5:35 PM EST
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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ) - US Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) visited Lynchburg Wednesday to discuss federal money for the city.

“Lynchburg received the biggest grant in the state to electrify its school buses,” said Kaine.

Kaine stopped at William Marvin Bass Elementary to discuss the federal funding that’s helping pay for 25 zero-emission school buses.

“It’s going to be good for the environment, good for the school board budget, but also you’ll see Lynchburg as a leader in the Commonwealth on this,” said Kaine.

“Nearly a third of our fleet will be transitioned to electric systems. So not only does that relate to environmental protection, but also air quality protection and making sure that our students have the best quality learning environment for every single child in Lynchburg,” said Reid Wodicka, Deputy Superintendent for Lynchburg City Schools.

District leaders expect to also save money.

“We spend about a million dollars right now on fuel. It will save us, we think between $250,000 and $300,000 a year,” said Wodicka.

Kaine spoke with teachers, parents, and school administrators about the struggles they face every day.

“I think that the post-COVID challenges of parents and kids was a big theme today, so there was learning loss with kids, but there’s also maybe even more impactful, kinda emotional isolation loss,” said Kaine.

He talked about the Virginia’s General Assembly efforts to increase teacher pay.

“Not done yet, but my understanding is that’s moving in a good direction and I think that will help,” said Kaine.