Mayor de Blasio today announced the Department of Education (NYCDOE) has reached a tentative agreement with Reliant Transportation for an acquisition of its school bus operating assets, which include its approximately 1,000 vehicle fleet and all equipment and intellectual property necessary for the provision of busing services. The agreement represents a long-term investment in school bus transportation that will provide greater stability, flexibility, and oversight in school bus service in the years ahead.
“We are doing everything we can to guarantee safe, fast, and reliable bus service for the students who need it most,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “This agreement delivers on that promise and makes a lasting investment in our school communities for years to come.”
In September, the City filed for incorporation to establish NYCSBUS (New York City School Bus Umbrella Services, Inc.), a not-for-profit to oversee school bus inventory and employees. Reliant specializes in busing for special education students and runs approximately 950 school age busing routes for the Department of Education annually, approximately 10 percent of NYCDOE’s school age busing network. NYCSBUS will offer employment to the current Reliant workforce and work with labor partners to develop acceptable collective bargaining agreement terms to prevent any workforce disruption.
“So many of our students rely on yellow bus service to get safely to and from school, and this is an important step in securing that service for our students in the years to come,” said Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza. “This is a long-term investment that will gradually phase in and provide greater stability and oversight in school bus service in the years ahead.”
“The City’s strategic investment in bussing comes at an important time when the need for safe transportation of its students is at its greatest,” said Tom Egan, Chief Executive Officer for Reliant parent company MV Transportation. “This transaction culminates Reliant’s successful longstanding partnership with the New York Department of Education and provides our dedicated and experienced workers with expanded opportunities to serve the students in their care.”
The transaction is anticipated to close in the first half of 2021. Until that time, Reliant will continue to operate as an independent vendor for the DOE to help ensure the seamless provision of bussing services.