Company steps up
Wednesday, 20th July, 2011
A local tour company has come to the rescue after the cancellation of a bus service for disabled school children.
The Home and Community Care (HACC) bus service had transported primary school and high school students to and from school.
It stopped after the local Management Committee, which ran it on behalf of the Department of Education and Communities, was unable to continue with the tender.
This was because the volunteer bus driver was no longer available.
However, local tour and passenger service “Buses R Us” has now stepped up with a quote for the tender.
NSW Regional Co-ordinator for the company, Trevor Cutjar, said they were contacted about running the service by the Department of Education and Communities on Thursday last week.
“We are currently negotiating with them and sorting out the finer points,” Mr Cutjar said yesterday.
He said “Buses R Us” was in the “process of procuring” a bus similar to the one used for the Central Darling Shire. He said this might even mean employing an extra casual staff member.
“This is another service to the community. We had no hesitation in wanting to do it once it became available,” Mr Cutjar said.
He said Buses R Us had experience in doing school runs in other towns like Port Augusta.
Mr Cutjar said he hoped to find out in the next couple of days whether it had won the tender to run the service.
“As soon as it is approved we will be up and running,” he said.
In the meantime, the chairman of the Management Committee for the Far West HACC Service, Marion Browne, said they will continue to run the service for the next two weeks until Buses R Us are accredited.
She said they were in the process of informing all of the parents who use the service.
Local mother, Sonja Boyce, said she couldn’t believe parents had to take a stand before action was taken.
Ms Boyce’s son, who is severely autistic, used the bus and would have difficulty adapting to change, she said.
“Unless something was said nothing would have been done about it,” she said.
“It had to take parents jumping up and down and tearing their hair out for something to change.”