School district hopes to purchase new food distribution van with grant funds

Feb 26, 2021

The school district plans to purchase a new van for the Wareham Public Schools Food Service Department using $45,000 in grant money, as long as the purchase is approved at Town Meeting.

“This is totally grant-funded,” Superintendent Dr. Kimberly Shaver-Hood said of the proposed purchase at the Feb. 25 School Committee meeting. She said Food Services Director Michael Russo wrote a grant application and secured the funds, which will cover the cost of the van. 

“It will be used to help transport foods to different sites,” Shaver-Hood said, noting that the district’s ongoing distribution of free meals would benefit from an additional vehicle. “In the summer we also take food out to different sites, so that would be the purpose of the van.”

Shaver-Hood asked the School Committee to approve putting an article — which will ask the town to OK the district’s purchase of the van — on an upcoming Town Meeting warrant. It was unclear which Town Meeting warrant the article would appear on, however. 

The district must take the request to a Town Meeting vote because it involves the purchase of a brand new vehicle, Shaver-Hood explained.

“Every new vehicle purchased needs to be approved at Town Meeting,” she said. “If this was a used vehicle, we would not have to have approval, [...] but because it’s new, everything needs to go that direction.”

The School Committee approved the request for a Town Meeting warrant article unanimously.