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Osceola County School Board member proposes LYNX as solution for bus driver shortage

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An Osceola County School Board member wants to see if LYNX buses can solve the district’s critical bus driver shortage.

Osceola County School Board member Julius Melendez. Image: Osceola County School District via YouTube

Julius Melendez believes he has found a win-win solution for schools and the transportation authority.

Central Florida schools have struggled to hire bus drivers. It was a challenge even before COVID-19, but then it got worse.

Osceola County has about 40 driver vacancies. It’s relying on just about everyone who is qualified to drive multiple routes.

Melendez says still some parents complain of two-hour waits for the bus.

He now wants to get LYNX to transport high school students.

“Maybe we have this partnership,” he said. “And maybe LYNX gets used to it and their routes are that way and we have a long-term relationship and we end up saving money in the long run.”

He says it could help LYNX with ridership, which is rising now but still only 65 to 70 percent of pre-pandemic levels.

The School Board will talk about the idea at a workshop meeting on Oct. 19.


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Joe Byrnes

About Joe Byrnes


Joe Byrnes came to WMFE/WMFV from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.