Greyhound Move To Cut 3,000 From Payroll
PHOENIX, Ariz. (AP) _ About 3,000 workers will lose their jobs with Greyhound Corp. as Greyhound turns over 96 bus stations to independent operators who will receive a percentage of each terminal’s business, officials announced Monday.
Severance pay for the workers and other expenses related to the move will cost Greyhound about $15 million, to be taken out of Greyhound’s second- quarter after-tax earnings, Greyhound chairman and chief executive officer John W. Teets said in a prepared statement.
The layoffs will save the nation’s largest bus carrier money in the long run, company officials said.
Greyhound should start saving considerable overhead expenses once the terminals were converted to commission agents because the company would not be paying the employees who worked there, company spokesman Don Behnke said Monday. Behnke said he didn’t know how much Greyhound officials hoped to save, and he didn’t know when the layoffs would be completed.
Unions representing Greyhound workers agreed to the move, Greyhound said in its statement.
Union officials could not immediately be reached for comment, according to a woman who answered the phone early Monday at the Amalgamated Council of Greyhound Divisions, but would not give her name. The president of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1223 in Phoenix, Gary Atkinson, said Monday he was unable to comment on the move.
Greyhound officials hoped most of the workers who lost their jobs could find employment with the new operators of the bus terminals, Behnke said.
Asked who would run the terminals, Behnke said, ″In many cases, they are former employees who have decided to become commission agencies under the situation.″
Greyhound has been involved in a massive scaling-down of its bus lines, which it says have been crippled in recent years by cheap airline fares. Under a move announced in August, Greyhound announced it was cutting its management ranks by about one-third.
Behnke said he did not know what percentage of a bus terminal’s business the independent operators would receive, but he said Greyhound had operated under such arrangements for years.
″We’ve had commissioned agents almost as long as we’ve been in business - mostly in the smaller towns,″ Behnke said.
In addition to the 96 bus stations to be turned over to commissioned agents, Greyhound operates 31 other bus stations. Greyhound said about 1,900 Greyhound stations around the country have been run by commission agents.