Illinois Police - Bump in the road.... : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

This is a small local story. An inconvenience caused by buggy y2k compliant software. The irony is that it hits background checks on school bus drivers. Every year in Illinois we end up hiring drivers that show up later as media horror stories. I just hope the clearances that were 'pushed through' weren't falling through cracks, because Ms. Cullinans's 'bump' could be TEOTWAWKI for a child.

Chicago Tribune

[for educational/research purposes only]


By Megan O'Matz, Tribune Staff Writer. Tribune staff writer Douglas Holt contributed to this report. August 18, 1999

With schools beginning to open, Illinois State Police have been wrestling with a balky computer to reduce a backlog of criminal background checks for school bus drivers and head off an anticipated shortage.

The police checks were slowed--in some cases by months--as the agency worked out bugs in its new $10 million, Y2K-compliant computer fingerprint identification system in Joliet.

Working overtime, state police and the secretary of state's office in recent days pushed through clearances for 1,000 to 1,200 prospective school bus drivers who had been waiting much of the summer for responses, officials said.

Under state law, people with serious criminal histories cannot take the wheel of a school bus.

"We need a continuous supply of bus drivers, and this was killing it," said Woody Fitzmaurice, general manager of student transportation for the Chicago Public Schools.

The city schools, which employ roughly 2,200 bus drivers a year, do not expect an immediate scarcity of drivers, having cut 200 positions through route changes.

"It's been an inconvenience," said Roberta Cullinan, contract manager for Ryder Student Transportation in Lake Forest. "It's a bump in the road. It's a glitch. But those things happen."

In an already tight labor market, the delays posed another unwelcome hurdle for school districts struggling to find bus drivers.

Although most of the school bus applicants submitted before Aug. 1 are done, 30 to 100 applications were still pending, according to estimates provided by the secretary of state's office and state police.

Also in limbo were clearances for 3,000 people seeking to become, among other things, teachers, foster parents, adoptive parents, security guards, health-care workers, child-care workers and nursing home employees. That backlog is expected to be eliminated by Friday, said Tim DaRosa, state police deputy director. Without the completed criminal background check, a prospective driver cannot obtain the required bus permit and commercial driver's license.


More @ link.

-- Deborah (, August 18, 1999


You mean that if I have an adulterous relationship, lie about it under oath, have a suspicious past with many dead bodies, and have had professional training in lying to the camera, I can be President but cant drive a bus??

-- PDD/EO_Writer (bill@1600pennsylvania.ave), August 19, 1999.

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