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Senate Panel OKs Bill to Allow School Bus Ads (Feb 14, 2011)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A state Senate committee has given its approval to a bill that allows paid advertisements to be displayed on public school buses, despite some concerns that the ads could be distracting to drivers.

The Senate Education Committee approved the bill Monday on a 9-6 vote. It now goes to the full Senate.

The bill by Republican Sen. Ralph Shortey of Oklahoma City would allow local school boards to enter into contracts for ads to be placed on buses and other "transportation equipment." The measure specifically prohibits certain kinds of advertising, including any political, religious or adult-oriented ads.

State Sen. Ralph Garrison says he's concerned that advertisements on school buses could distract drivers and "put our children in jeopardy."

But Shortey said it would provide much-needed revenue to cash-strapped districts.

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