"Our future is riding with us!"
Advocacy - Doing our Part to Keep our Children Safe
NYAPT has engaged in advocacy for student and school bus safety for many years. We are proud of our impact on many key laws and regulations that govern our school transportation in New York. We believe our efforts help to keep our children and our school bus fleets safe and secure.
As professionals, we accept the responsibility for advocating before and educating public officials objectively and honestly about the needs of school transportation. We take our role as advocates very seriously. The safety and lives of our children are at stake. We are grateful for the work of our Legislative Committee and the Board of Directors in developing our public advocacy positions.
We are aware of the need to identify and execute measures that will make our operations ever more efficient without compromising safety. Accordingly, our advocacy efforts include recommendations that enhance performance, accountability and efficiency .
Below are current articles of legislative activity, followed by key documents that reflect our positions on key issues and key source documents for our members to use. These documents begin with our overall Legislative Agenda, which frames our efforts in the coming year.
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATION STATE BUDGET PRIORITIES 2020-2021
Read the entire Legislative Budget 2021 Document here: 2021 Legislative Budget Priorities
APPORTIONMENT OF STATE AID FOR COVID-19 CLOSURE OF SCHOOLS
This bill was signed by Governor Cuomo on Wednesday June 17, 2020.
BILL NUMBER: S7996b
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF THE BILL:
Provides that school districts are entitled to an apportionment of state aid for the closure of schools in response to the novel coronavirus, COVID-19 for the 2019-20 school year.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section one of the bill amends Subdivision 7 of section 3604 of the education law, as amended by chapter 605 of the laws of 2019, as it relates to providing school districts an apportionment of state aid for the closure of schools in response to the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.
Section two of the bill sets the effective date.
Read the bill in its entirety here: Bill Number S7996b
OPPOSITION LETTER TO S.7278 by Senator Ritchie
NYAPT has issued an opposition letter to a bill (S.7278 by Senator Ritchie) that would require school districts to provide driver record information to parents. A copy of that letter is linked below.
INSTALLATION OF LAP/SHOULDER BELTS STATEMENT
On January 20, 2019, NYAPT adopted a statement calling for the installation of lap/shoulder belts in buses manufactured on or after September 1, 2022. At the NYAPT June 2020 Board meeting, the NYAPT Board approved an amendment to the NYAPT statement on three-point lap shoulder belts for New York school buses, amending the implementation date to September 1, 2025.
Read the full statement here: NYAPT Seat Belt Statement 652020.pdf
GETTING TO KNOW YOU!
This year has seen the appointment of new chairs and ranking members for each of the major committees with which we interact on a regular basis. See the links below to read brief biographies and backgrounds on these chairs and ranking minority members.
Senator Timothy Kennedy, Chair, Senate Transportation Committee
Senator Joseph Robach, Ranking Minority, Senate Transportation Committee
Senator Shelley Mayer, Chair, Senate Education Committee
Senator Betty Little, Ranking Minority, Senate Education Committee
Assemblyman William Magnarelli, Chair, Assembly Transportation Committee
Assemblyman David McDonough, Ranking Minority, Assembly Transportation Committee
Assemblyman Michael Benedetto, Chair, Assembly Education Committee
Assemblywoman Mary Beth Walsh, Ranking Minority, Assembly Education Committee
SCHOOL TRANSPORTATION STATE LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES 2019-2020
Criminal Trespass and Security on a School Bus
NYAPT will support legislation that will establish a crime of criminal trespass on a school bus to protect our drivers, our students and our property.
School bus safety extends beyond the usual concepts of driving safely and loading safely. In recent years, we have witnessed numerous incidents of individuals boarding school buses and causing problems including violent acts against students and drivers alike. In one dramatic situation, a school bus driver was shot and killed on the bus while defending his student riders.
In New York, dozens of such situations have been experienced aboard school buses. It is unacceptable that parents or other individuals would take it on themselves to board a bus and attack or verbally abuse a driver entrusted with the safety of the children or even the children riding on the bus. NYAPT believes the same legal protections afforded the school building should apply to the school bus as well.
NYAPT will advocate for passage of related enforcement, operational and education-related legislation that would form a more comprehensive response to the troubling trends of illegal passing:
Support creation of a dedicated education fund utilizing fines from 1174 convictions
Support legislation to establish a crime of vehicular homicide for instances where the death of a child is caused by a motorist while in the act of illegally passing a stopped school bus
Requires Drivers Education course for are convicted multiple times for illegally passing a stopped school bus
Removing or Revising the Divided Highway Elements of Section 1174
Other School Transportation Positions
2020 NYAPT Legislative and Budget Priorities Document
Testimony Provided to Joint Legislative Committee on Education
For additional information contact:
New York Association for Pupil Transportation
Government Affairs Associate
PC Public Affairs
* State and Federal Regulations *
We are not currently reviewing any key State agency regulations.