(1) The superintendent shall develop a reimbursement schedule to pay districts for the cost of student transportation vehicles purchased after September 1, 1982. While it is the responsibility of each district to select and pay for each student transportation vehicle purchased by the district, each district shall be paid a sum based on the category of vehicle, anticipated lifetime of vehicles of this category, and state reimbursement rate for the category plus inflation as recognized by the reimbursement schedule established in this section as set by the superintendent. Categories and reimbursement rates of vehicles shall be those established under RCW 28A.160.195
. The accumulated value of the payments and the potential investment return thereon shall be designed to be equal to the replacement cost of the vehicle less its salvage value at the end of its anticipated lifetime. The superintendent shall revise at least annually the reimbursement payments based on the current and anticipated future cost of comparable categories of transportation equipment. Reimbursements to school districts for approved transportation equipment shall be placed in a separate transportation vehicle fund established for each school district under RCW 28A.160.130
. However, educational service districts providing student transportation services pursuant to RCW 28A.310.180
(4) and receiving moneys generated pursuant to this section shall establish and maintain a separate transportation vehicle account in the educational service district's general expense fund for the purposes and subject to the conditions under RCW 28A.160.130
(2) To the extent possible, districts shall operate vehicles acquired under this section not less than the number of years or useful lifetime now, or hereafter, assigned to the category of vehicles by the superintendent. School districts shall properly maintain the transportation equipment acquired under the provisions of this section, in accordance with rules established by the office of the superintendent of public instruction. If a district fails to follow generally accepted standards of maintenance and operation, the superintendent of public instruction shall penalize the district by deducting from future reimbursements under this section an amount equal to the original cost of the vehicle multiplied by the fraction of the useful lifetime or miles the vehicle failed to operate.
(3) The superintendent shall annually develop a depreciation schedule to recognize the cost of depreciation to districts contracting with private carriers for student transportation. Payments on this schedule shall be a straight line depreciation based on the original cost of the appropriate category of vehicle.