Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Friday

July 19, 2013

Busing battle continues

TRAVERSE CITY — An association of private school bus contractors renewed its offensive against the Bay Area Transportation Authority.

The National School Transportation Association this year successfully petitioned federal officials to end several BATA bus routes used by Suttons Bay Public Schools students to get to and from school. NSTA officials contended the routes violated federal regulations intended to prevent unfair competition between federally funded transit agencies and private school bus operators.

But BATA officials have since reorganized their organization’s business model and routes, and Suttons Bay’s Board of Education voted this month to continue buying bus passes in bulk for $124,000 a year so students can ride BATA buses come September.

Jim Seal, a California-based consultant for the NSTA, wants to know specifically how that arrangement will work.

“They haven’t disclosed, to our knowledge, what the parents, the school district and the agency have agreed to for $124,000.”

Seal sent a public records request to BATA this month that sought, among other things, copies of all correspondence between BATA and the Federal Transit Administration, and between BATA and Suttons Bay school officials. Seal also sent a copy of the request to FTA officials.

BATA Executive Director Tom Menzel said Seal’s written request included “many inaccuracies,” including an assertion that BATA and Suttons Bay entered into a contractual agreement.

Menzel said there is no contact and said any organization can buy bus passes in bulk from BATA.

Menzel said BATA officials will respond to the records request and correct the NSTA’s misunderstandings.



Text Only

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Associated Press Video
Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot