UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – The first day of school is right around the corner, which may leave Utica City School District parents wondering if they will have struggles with transportation for their children. Last year, the bus driver shortage impacted many students’ daily commute to school.

This year, Durham School services say they are in a much better position. As of right now, the company is about 96% staffed with 27 trainee candidates in the process for the upcoming school year, they have an estimated 125 routes, and in the first few weeks, they will fill the staffing gaps with drivers from other areas across the state in order to have an adequate amount of drivers for each route.

And for recruitment, the bus company has increased wages by 12% percent. They are offering an outside and inside referral bonus of $500 to $1,000 per person.