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Controversy spices awarding of bus contract

August 26, 2014

Morning News — Lisa Lete Teton Stage Lines owner Donavan Harrington makes a point during Tuesday's special Blackfoot School Board meeting.

It was not an easy decision to make; in fact, at times the frustration was evident. However; the Blackfoot School District board of trustees voted 3-2 to grant Teton Stage Lines 10 bus routes at a special board meeting on Tuesday night.
The board called the meeting to finalize the 2014-15 school transportation bids. The were reopened last month after Donavan Harrington, the owner of Idaho Falls-based Teton Stage Lines, appealed the board's decision denying him the routes even though his firm was the lowest bidder.
The board cited a handful of contract violations as reasons for not initially awarding the routes to Teton Stage Lines.
While Harrington contends he has taken care of all of the violations, that did not stop the noted "violations" from being a hot topic of controversy for the board in making its final decision.
Trustee Derek Preece asked the district's transportation director Melissa Carrasco to help clarify the documented violations.
While there were a variety of infractions in the past year school year, some reoccurring violations included "not having qualified drivers available to fill routes" and "not having adequate backup buses when needed."
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