Anne Arundel County to offer new financial bonuses to school bus drivers and aides

Posted at 10:20 AM, Nov 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-04 19:34:18-04

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Anne Arundel County says they will begin offering financial bonuses in an effort to recruit and retain contracted school bus drivers and aides.

Officials hope the added perks prevent future situations like what happened in September, when drivers called out of work in mass creating severe shortages that left students stranded throughout the county.

“We can’t continue leaving kids stranded and parents work schedules disrupted due to a national shortage of school bus drivers,” said County Executive Steuart Pittman.

In Focus: Bus Driver Wages

The plan calls for existing and new drivers to receive $5,000 in bonuses with aides getting $2,000.

Payments are expected to be made in three separate installments.

Here's a breakdown.

Existing Drivers ($5,000 Drivers/$2,000 Aides)

  1. $2,500/$1,000 immediately when the program starts and contracts are completed with their respective employer.
  2. $500/$200 on the first pay date in March 2022.
  3. $2,000/$800 on the last pay date of the school year in June 2022.

New Hires ($5,000 Drivers/$2,000 Aides)

  1. $2,500/$1,000 after the first week working an AACPS bus route.
  2. $500/$200 after 90 days of working.
  3. $2,000/$800 on the last pay date of the school year in June 2022.

Payouts are expected to begin in the coming weeks, once contracts are finalized with individual bus contractors.

Pittman estimates the cost to be around $4.2 million, which will come from federal recovery funds.