Maryland state lawmakers are looking for long-term solutions to the school bus driver shortage.
The House Environment and Transportation Committee held a hearing Wednesday with school bus drivers to figure out how the state can help.
A number of jurisdictions have been dealing with school bus driver shortages. Some drivers are so frustrated that they’ve staged sick-outs.
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The disruptions worked as local school districts did provide better wages and incentives, but right now, the focus is on the long-term.
Erin Appel from the Maryland School Bus Contractors Association said it comes down to pay.
“Dump-truck drivers, Amazon drivers, even DoorDash drivers make more, and without the additional stress of having a bus full of school kids,” Appel said. “On average, school bus drivers in Maryland are currently being paid, on average, $19 to $20 an hour, which is considerably less than other Class B commercial driver’s license holders.”
Representatives from the Maryland State Board of Education said efforts are being put in place to recruit more drivers using American Rescue Plan funds for incentives. They will also streamline the process for drivers who have to get CDLs to drive a school bus.
State Lawmakers Searching For Solutions To School Bus Driver Shortage was originally published on wolbbaltimore.com