Freeman Bus Laying Off 152 Workers


It didn't sit well when more than 150 Freeman Bus Corporation employees -- including 100 drivers -- found out they'll be losing their jobs at the Indian River Central School District this summer. 

"It's really not a good thing," driver Don Arno said, "for everybody involved."

The news came after Freeman Bus Corporation in Watertown lost its contract with Indian River.

The national busing company First Student offered the school district a contract at a lower price.

The president of Freeman Bus says his company simply couldn't compete.

"It ultimately came down to price," Robert Freeman said, "and from my standpoint -- being a small business -- I could not compete with a large conglomerate such as that."

A total of 152 people could be out of work when the layoffs occur in June. That includes 100 bus drivers, 35 attendants, and about 17 administrators and mechanics. 

"The people that worked for me out at Indian River were dedicated individuals," Freemans said, "and it's really unfortunate this circumstance has happened."

But the drivers won't be the only ones who'll have to adjust to the change. The students will too.

"It's not going to be a good thing for them either," Arno said.

"They're going to have to make the transition too," he said, "the children and the parents." 

It isn't all bad news. The president of Freeman Bus says its likely many of the bus drivers will be hired by First Student.

See Labor Department's notice


Saturday, December 10, 2016
, Watertown, NY

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