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An Allegheny Transportation Services employee made a passionate plea to East Allegheny School Board prior to its upcoming contract negotiations with the company.
East Allegheny School District is currently in its final year of a five-year contract with Allegheny Transportation Services. ATS provides regular student-to-school transportation as well as charter services, such as field trips and travel to and from sporting events.
Standard procedure is for the school district to review contracts every five years and potentially open the bidding process to other transportation companies.
The board recently voted to begin accepting new proposals for the transportation services.
At Monday’s board meeting, Jeff Payne, head mechanic at ATS, told the school board he wanted to make sure they knew how much his company cared about this contract.
“As an employee of ATS, I know how these bus drivers feel about these kids. These bus drivers do a great job with these kids and they love their jobs,” said Payne, who said he also drives the buses sometimes.
Although Payne is not an owner of Allegheny Transportation Services, he said he was proud of his company and that the owners of ATS do a great job.
He said that the owners treat the employees well and that he chose to come to the meeting to support his company and reminded the school board of how good the relationship has been with ATS over the past four years.
“I understand that you guys have to crunch your numbers or whatever, but I just wanted you to know how we felt,” Payne said.
After Payne spoke, the school board thanked him but did not go into any detail about the current relationship with ATS.
The school district owns the property on Wall Avenue where the school bus fleet is parked and maintained.
In other business:
The board approved the Allegheny Force Football Club’s use of the junior-senior high school football field from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays for soccer practice.
The approval runs Feb. 3 to March 26 at a rate of $1,350 per month.
Jason A. Mignanelli is a freelance writer from Pittsburgh’s North Hills and a student at Duquesne University. This is his first byline for Tube City Almanac. He may be reached at email@example.com.
Originally published February 12, 2020.