Yesterday the Board of Directors of the North County Transit District (I am a member of that 9 member Board) voted unanimously to outsource the bus drivers and mechanics to a private concern. The buses and routes will be the same, and most of the employees will likely be the same but they will work for a private company instead of a public agency. The change will largely be invisible to the transit riding public. So why do it? Because the private company can put service on the street for about 10 million dollars less per year. Public transit is taxpayer subsidized and the Board felt this would be the best way to maximize public benefit and most efficiently use taxpayer dollars, which is especially important in these tough times.
When dealing with the livelihoods of people who have worked in good faith to serve the public, the NCTD Board and executive staff was very concerned for the well-being of our employees. But since the state has taken away millions of operating dollars and the sales tax receipts from “TDA” and “Transnet” are reduced due to the economic downturn, difficult decisions have had to be made. Our decision was one that we felt best served the taxpaying public as well as the employees of the district.
Below are some news stories about the changes coming to the North County Transit District:
San Diego Union-Tribune Outsourcing of NCTD’s bus services is approved
North County Times Transit board votes to privatize its 325 bus workers
Channel 10 News Coverage
San Diego Channel 6 Coverage