Help Wanted

Google "bus drivers" shortage, and the results will show that Oak Ridge’s problem (this one in particular, anyway) is far from unique.

More surprising to me was finding that the hourly rate offered is about the same as places like Northern Virginia, Seattle or Salt Lake City, despite the fact that our cost of living is (along with wages generally) lower here.

Bill Dodge, a frequent writer to members of the school board, claims that Oak Ridge pays drivers 50% more than surrounding districts.  Although I have not verified Mr. Dodge’s claim, the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ website shows that the mean hourly wage for school bus drivers nationally is just $12.08.

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The News-Sentinel reports this morning that the Anderson County jail is overcrowded again, with 19 positions open.  Of the last 20 to take the Civil Service exam for that job, only 4 passed. Local governments are hiring, but no one’s answering.

5 Responses to “Help Wanted”

  1. on 26 Sep 2007 at 4:32 pm Joel

    “the Anderson County jail is overcrowded again, with 19 positions open.”

    The jail is crowded even though there are 19 vacant cells? Why don’t they move some of the prisoners into the 19 vacant positions?

  2. on 26 Sep 2007 at 5:03 pm Netmom

    That would be 19 personnel vacancies, which keeps them from using an additional (empty) section of the jail.

    I’ve learned subsequently that not all 20 flunked the civil service exam; some of those flunked (or refused to take) the required drug screening, which is one reason that the prisoners wouldn’t make good candidates for those 19 vacancies.

    We’re having the same problem in the bus driver search: too many fail the drug screen. Not exactly what you want in someone driving 60 or so children in the big yellow cheesewagon.

  3. on 26 Sep 2007 at 5:22 pm girlfriend

    From what I have heard the applicants were worse than the inmates.

  4. on 26 Sep 2007 at 9:12 pm Joel

    heh

  5. on 27 Sep 2007 at 12:35 pm Jacket

    “From what I have heard the applicants were worse than the inmates.”

    Some of them may have been previous inmates.

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