Octa's transportation blog

New 3-Year Contract Approved with OC Bus Drivers

OCTA approved a new three-year collective bargaining agreement with the union that represents OC Bus drivers, rewarding them for the essential work they perform to keep Orange County moving.

The agreement with Teamsters Local 952 includes wage increases of 14% over the next three years, beginning in May and running through April 2027.

“We appreciate the Teamsters efforts to negotiate in good faith and reach a fair and competitive deal for our valued employees,” said OCTA Chair Tam T. Nguyen. “Our coach operators perform a vital service and are often the face of OCTA, the people that tens of thousands of bus passengers rely on for the highest level of safe and reliable service.”

OCTA directly employees approximately 600 coach operators, while about 330 are contracted, ensuring both great customer service and the most efficient use of taxpayer money that supports public transit.

Other highlights of the contract include an accelerated wage scale that allows coach operators to advance to the top rate after four years instead of five years. Drivers will also receive higher wages during training, a higher uniform allowance, and bonuses for working days with historically high absentee rates such as Mother’s Day.

Safety, which remains the top priority at OCTA, is also reinforced in the contract. OCTA and the union will work together to form a committee to further focus on safety. In the wake of several recent high-profile safety incidents in the region involving bus drivers, OCTA continues to expand safety measures to protect coach operators, including installing more safety barriers on OC Buses and refining training to de-escalate and resolve conflicts on buses.