08/29/2017

 

 




  Transit Agencies Could Benefit from VW Funding

From Metro:

In 2016, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) filed a complaint against Volkswagen alleging that they violated the Clean Air Act. During normal operation and use, the vehicles emitted levels of nitrogen oxides (NOx) significantly in excess of EPA’s compliance levels

Volkswagen was found guilty and agreed to pay up to $14.7 billion to settle allegations of cheating emissions. As part of the lawsuit, Volkswagen is required to establish and fund an Environmental Mitigation Trust, known as EMT. Over the next 10 years, $2.9 billion from the VW settlement will fund environmental mitigation projects that reduce emissions of NOx.

In 2016, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) filed a complaint against Volkswagen alleging that they violated the Clean Air Act. During normal operation and use, the vehicles emitted levels of nitrogen oxides (NOx) significantly in excess of EPA’s compliance levels

This money will be deposited in a trust and allocated among state beneficiaries. Each state receives a set amount based on the number of affected vehicles sold in the state. Eligible projects include class 4-8 school bus, shuttle bus — and transit bus replacement.

Transit buses fueled by propane autogas are an ideal fit for EMT funding due to their environmental and economical benefits.

Propane reduces harmful emissions, especially NOx, when compared to conventional fuels. According to the World LP Gas Association, propane emits 96% less NOx than conventional diesel and 68% less NOx than gasoline. When compared to conventional diesel, vehicles fueled by propane emit 80% fewer smog-producing hydrocarbons and virtually eliminate particulate matter when compared with conventional diesel.

Across the globe, more than 26 million vehicles run on propane autogas. In the transit industry, there are almost 1,000 shuttles equipped with a ROUSH CleanTech propane system operating across the nation, including Delaware Transit Corp., Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority, Florida’s LeeTran, and San Diego........  READ MORE >

 

  EXPO Solution Sessions Announced for 2018 Operator Education

The education component for the 2018 UMA Motorcoach EXPO is now in place with 22 solution sessions.

EXPO, the premier education and buying event for private bus and motorcoach operators, takes place January 6-10, 2018 in San Antonio.

The education lineup was designed by a team of UMA member operators to carefully target the most critical professional development needs of motorcoach operators and their management teams. The full education lineup is on the EXPO website, www.motorcoachexpo.com. Early bird registration discounts for EXPO continue through September 15.

Relevant education is one of the top reasons operators give for coming to EXPO and sessions will focus on high profile issues in the industry, including: hiring drivers, managing your technology, ELDs, ways to cut costs, cybersecurity concerns, and much more. Solution Sessions on Sunday will be divided into five tracks−operations, finance, marketing, technology, and small fleet. On Monday morning, Solution Sessions are not divided by track and are applicable to company personnel across departmental lines.

Speakers will be announced in the coming weeks. The schedule of sessions is a follows:

SUNDAY, JANUARY 7 | 11:15 AM - 12:15 PM
OPERATIONS: Generational Differences: Bridging Generational Gaps
FINANCE: Rather be Fishing? Preparing the Next Generation to Run Your Business
MARKETING: When to Outsource and When to Hire
TECHNOLOGY: Okay, You Have WiFi … What's Next? How to Manage Your Technology

The 2018 UMA Motorcoach EXPO will take place in San Antonio, TX, January 6 - 10. The days of the show are Saturday through Wednesday. In addition to Solution Sessions, there will be a show floor with the latest vehicles, equipment, products and services; competitions for maintenance professionals and motocoach drivers; and a celebratory awards dinner. Networking events include a welcome reception on Saturday, the always over-the-top Sneak Preview After Party on Monday , and the signature EXPO event, Cigars and Cordials on Tuesday, immediately following the Leadership Awards Celebration and Dinner. Early bird registration is available for operators through September 15. For more information go to www.motorcoachexpo.com.    READ MORE >

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  School Bus Agency Reduces Driver Shortage, Offers Assistance During Hurricane

From School Bus Fleet:

DALLAS - A struggling school bus agency has significantly cut down its driver shortage and successfully transported students as back-to-school season kicked off here last week, and is now assisting in local hurricane evacuation efforts.

Dallas County Schools (DCS) announced that the first day of school for client districts on Aug. 21 was smooth and relatively uneventful, a marked change from recent years, according to a news release from the agency. DCS provides student transportation services to more than 76,000 students in 13 school districts in Dallas County.

 

DALLAS - A struggling school bus agency has significantly cut down its driver shortage and successfully transported students as back-to-school season kicked off here last week, and is now assisting in local hurricane evacuation efforts.

"We contacted each of the districts to make sure we met their expectations and heard an overwhelming response of positive comments from all of our clients," said Leatha Mullins, the interim superintendent for DCS. "This has been the most successful start of school in recent years."

DCS has continued to add qualified drivers, bringing the number of drivers needed from 94 as of last week to 28 as of Monday, a spokesperson for DCS told School Bus Fleet. Officials reported that drivers are completing the certification and safety processes daily.

Mullins added that DCS can cover remaining routes with administrative staff, and that routes can be split among drivers until DCS is at full capacity.

"Driver shortages are a national issue, but this year we are beating the trend," Mullins said. "I still want to encourage qualified applicants to apply, because this job does pay well and has competitive benefits."

Dallas Independent School District (ISD) and Carrollton-Farmers Branch Independent School District (ISD) began classes on Monday. Dallas ISD and DCS have been working together to ensure a smooth first day of school, NBC DFW reports.   Meanwhile, DCS assisted in local hurricane emergency response efforts on Monday evening, sending up to four activity buses to transport evacuees being flown into Love Field to a shelter in Irving, according to a news release from DCS. For operational periods between route times, DCS planned to add school buses as needed.

"I deeply appreciate our partners at DCS, especially since this is happening on the first day of school," said Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins. "We regularly conduct drills with their professional staff and drivers to prepare for just this type of emergency."

DCS staff quickly rounded up buses and drivers to assist in the effort.  "We have an amazing staff who rallied to help out Houston families during this devastating natural disaster," Mullins added.  "We are here to do whatever we can to ease their burden during this time."

The school bus agency has faced some challenges recently, including problems with a stop-arm program that spurred lawsuits against the cities of Dallas and Carrollton, financial difficulties, and the possibility of being shut down. As SBF previously reported, a Texas Senate committee approved a bill in April, SB 1122, that could do just that. The proposed shutdown would be effective Sept. 1, 2018. In November, voters will decide whether to dissolve the agency, according to CBS 11 News.           READ MORE >

 


 

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