JOHNSTOWN - Fulton-Montgomery Community College students will be able to ride a Gloversville Transit Services bus to class from the city, even if Glove Cities officials don't come to an agreement on a transit services contract.
FMCC President Dustin Swanger said Thursday he met with GTS Transit Director Al Schutz and Gloversville Mayor Dayton King earlier that day to discuss bus services for the college students.
He said he and city officials agreed FMCC students' transit services should not be interrupted.
By showing the driver their valid FMCC identification card, students will be able to board a GTS bus at North Perry and Main streets, also known as the four corners.
The $250-per-semester transit pass still will be available.
"We decided it was unacceptable for students not to be served," Swanger said. "It is my hope that the municipalities can come to an agreement and students can see full service."
FMCC has an annual contract with GTS. This year's contract was approved for $12,600.
"I never wanted to disrupt service for college students," King said this morning. "[The college] keeps improving and we want to make sure people have the opportunity to go there whether they have transportation or not."
FMCC's enrolled student population has grown 27 percent in the last four years.
Schutz said this morning about 20 FMCC students have the transit pass and live in Johnstown, but since the pass was just launched last spring, he expects a large influx for the fall semester.
"I'm happy that certain people can sit down and work collaboratively for the common good," Schutz said.
King said the GTS contract was dropped off at the Johnstown City Hall Thursday and he is waiting to hear back from Johnstown city officials.
Mayor Sarah Slingerland couldn't be reached this morning for comment.
On Monday, the Gloversville Common Council voted to allow services until Nov. 12 for the city of Johnstown route if the city agrees to pay the original $38,100 that was already budgeted by Sept. 30.
If the city of Johnstown agrees to pay an extra $6,000, as well as $50,000 for next year's services, there will be no interruption.
The Johnstown Common Council did not take action at a meeting Monday on the contract, but instead discussed meeting Gloversville halfway and paying $3,000 extra for the contract.
King has said payment for 2007, 2008 and 2009 wasn't received until this year from Johnstown. He also said cutting runs would not help reduce costs because GTS receives state Transit Operating Assistance revenue for each mile the buses travel.
"Ultimately, we need one city here and we need to stop this because the people who lose are the people who use the transit system," King said. "But we can't subsidize another city any longer. What I'm doing is taking a stand, and this should have happened years ago."