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RTS Drivers Protest, after RGRTA Decision to Cancel Contract with RCSD

By Staff


rts1-newHundreds of protestors picketed outside the Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority May 7, calling for the removal of RGRTA CEO Bill Carpenter, after Carpenter’s decision to cut ties with the Rochester City School District last week, which would potentially leave 144 Regional Transit Service employees without jobs.

“His decision is going to put more kids in the transit center, not less,” said Amalgamated Transit Union president Jacques Chapman. “So, it’s just poor management. It’s poor management.”

ATU is the union representing RGRTA workers.

The union’s objections came after Carpenter decided in April to discontinue RTS’ partnership with RCSD after its current contract expires in June.

Carpenter said RTS could not sustain the operational, safety, financial, and reputational impacts resulting from several violent incidents that involved students at the new $50 million transit center downtown.

However, following the RTS decision, RCSD said it would still have no choice but to provide students with bus passes for public transportation.

“Providers of door-to-door ‘yellow bus’ service have told the district that they could not have drivers and equipment in place for all secondary students in time for the next school year,” RCSD stated.

Yet, in recent developments, although RGRTA board members said they had not discussed Carpenter’s termination of the $11 million contract at the board’s Thursday meeting, Carpenter said RTS is currently in discussions with RCSD regarding transporting students to school during the summer.

In addition, RGRTA board chairman James Redmond, has reportedly asked RGRTA customers to remain patient while the company continues to negotiate the matter.