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-Remarks By Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani At Public Hearing On
The first bill before me today is Introductory Number 585-B, sponsored by Council Members Dear, Fiala, and several of their colleagues, in conjunction with my Administration. This legislation would amend the Administrative Code of the City of New York by ensuring that every eligible child receives a seat on school buses operated by the Board of Education.
Originally introduced and supported by Council Member Fiala, this bill coincides with similar legislation recently signed by Governor Pataki, which allows the City to take even further legislative action to prevent children from standing on school buses.
Intro. 585-B prohibits a student from boarding school buses operated by, or under contract with, the Board of Education unless a seat is available for the student. The goal of this legislation is to increase the safety of our children aboard school buses by making sure all children are provided with a seat.
To achieve this goal, the Board of Education would prepare and revise two school bus service plans annually. These plans would be submitted to the Mayor and the Speaker of the City Council prior to the first day of the fall and summer school sessions.
If at any time during the school year the number of eligible students exceeds the number of available seats on a school bus, the Board would be required to revise its plans and take appropriate steps to ensure that all eligible students have a seat on a bus.
Under this bill, students would be permitted to board a school bus regardless of seat availability in certain situations, including if a student is waiting at a school bus stop unaccompanied by an adult, and during the first ten days of the fall and summer school sessions.
My Administration has made the care and protection of our City's children a priority, and this bill, through the support of Council Members Fiala and Dear, is yet another example of legislation that will greatly improve the safety of our school children.
For the reasons previously stated, I will now sign the bill.
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