TRENTON - (AP) - New Jersey's cash-strapped public school districts are one step closer to being able to raise money by soliciting school bus advertising.

The measure, approved late last month in the Assembly, would allow ads on the outside of buses that districts own or lease.

Districts would set their own ad rates, determine how many ads are sold and their size. But ads for tobacco or alcohol products or ones that push a political agenda would not be allowed.

The bill requires boards of education to use half the revenue the ads generate to defray fuel costs for student busing. The other half could go toward school programs or services the individualdistricts deem appropriate.

The legislation now heads to the Senate.