by Krystal Paco
Guam - In a perfect world, the Department of Public Works would have 189 buses and 189 bus drivers.
But that's not the case as DPW superintendent of bus operations Franklin Taitano reported to lawmakers at an oversight hearing held earlier this week.
To date, Taitano says there are a total of 179 runs islandwide for both public and private schools. The reality is, there are only 112 drivers and the bus fleet numbers fluctuate.
"We are in the process of recruiting bus drivers we are in the process of purchasing new buses but that's not happening right around the corner. We are in the process of doing both of them," he said.
But why 189 buses and drivers? Taitano says on any given day, five to eight bus drivers may be on leave, out sick, or reporting to jury duty.
Meanwhile, DPW continues to work towards purchasing 12 to 15 new 60-passenger buses with funding provided through the department of interior. If ordered in the next few weeks, the buses may arrive in time for the start of next school year.