Government meets school bus owners

PHILIPSBURG–Prime Minister William Marlin, Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports (ECYS) Silveria Jacobs and Ministry ECYS representatives met with School Bus Owners Association board members to clarify the announcement made in the papers in reference to the new school busing service expected to go into effect August 2016.

The board members of the Association representing 31 school bus owners had the opportunity to express their concerns about the new school busing service and the perceived negative impact it could have on their livelihood. The meeting was received positively and Minister Jacobs reiterated that it was not her intention to put anyone out of business.

She has the responsibility to execute Government policy and regulations in compliance with the National Accountability and Compliance Ordinance and thus regulation of the school busing service is necessary. The terms of reference are available to be reviewed as of today, Wednesday, March 30, after which an informative session is planned for April 13.

The board members were encouraged and have agreed that they will review the terms of reference to get a better idea of what will be expected in executing the new school busing service. Jacobs has promised to remain open to dialogue with the association in the future.

Democratic Party (DP) leader Member of Parliament Sarah Wescot-Williams saidTuesday that the best solution for Government’s planned outsourcing of the school bus system is for the bus owners/drivers to be organised into an association and lobby to get the contract from Government. “Government should look at how the bus drivers and owners are organised” and see how to work with them, she said. She said she intended to talk with Jacobs to see what can be done in this matter.

Bus drivers/owners had a meeting on the ring road on Tuesday morning after they learned about Government’s plans to outsource the school transportation without any input from them, Wescot-Williams said in a party press conference in Parliament House on Tuesday

Source: The Daily Herald Government meets school bus owners