Troy considers private busing

TROY, Mich. – Support personnel are offering wage concessions in the Troy School District as officials there review bids on outsourcing janitorial, transportation, food and grounds maintenance services, according to C&G News.

The district faces an $8 million budget gap, C&G News reported. The Troy Education Support Personnel Association has offered to take a 5 percent pay cut, which union president Harry Sahourieh said would save $5 million, according to the report.

Troy has received transportation bids from Durham School Services, based in California, and First Student, whose North American operations are based in Ohio. Both firms already contract with other Michigan districts, C&G News reported.

The board is tentatively scheduled to consider the bids at an April 21 meeting. Operational cost savings to the district over a three-year period by outsourcing transportation services would range from $1.16 million to $1.8 million, the article said, citing documents posted at the district Web site.

School board President Carol Pochodylo said the district wants to “work directly with TESPA to study cost savings that could avoid this change,” but that the board’s goal is to make cuts that do not directly impact instruction, according to C&G News. She also said that the companies under consideration “would be committed to hiring our existing transportation employees at their current wage or an increased rate,” the article said.

C&G News, “Troy school board to vote on privatization April 21,” April 7, 2009

Mackinac Center for Public Policy, “Mackinac Center releases 2008 school privatization survey,” Jan. 16, 2009