The ABA's appeal comes in response to the CTA's petition for exemption from federal charter regulations, seeking to limit the opportunity for private bus operators to compete for service...

The ABA's appeal comes in response to the CTA's petition for exemption from federal charter regulations, seeking to limit the opportunity for private bus operators to compete for service contracts in support of the 2024 DNC Convention

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The American Bus Association (ABA) formally appealed to the U.S. Department of Transportation to intervene in a matter concerning fair competition in bus services for the upcoming 2024 Democratic National Convention (DNC).

In a letter addressed to U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, Peter Pantuso, president and CEO of the ABA, expressed deep concern over efforts to impede private bus operators' fair participation in providing public transportation services for national events, as mandated by federal law.

"The ABA is deeply troubled by recent developments that threaten the fair competition and economic opportunities of private bus operators," said Pantuso. "We seek the intervention of the U.S. Department of Transportation to ensure compliance with federal law and uphold the principles of fair competition in the transportation sector."

Looking to Uphold Charter Regulations

The ABA represents over 3,800 members, including approximately 1,000 motorcoach operators, who provide a wide range of motorcoach transportation services across the U.S., including charter services.

Pantuso underscored the importance of federal regulations, specifically the charter regulations (49 Code of Federal Regulations Part 604), which safeguard private bus operators from unfair competition by federally subsidized public transit operators.

The ABA's appeal comes in response to the Chicago Transit Authority's (CTA) petition for exemption from federal charter regulations, seeking to limit the opportunity for private bus operators to compete for service contracts in support of the 2024 DNC Convention, scheduled for August 19 to 22, in Chicago.

 Pantuso highlighted the inconsistency in the CTA's actions, noting the absence of a similar exemption request for the Republican National Convention, occurring within the same geographic region.

"We urge the U.S. Department of Transportation to rigorously review the CTA's exemption request and uphold the integrity of federal charter regulations," emphasized Pantuso. "Private bus operators play a vital role in supporting major events such as political conventions, and protecting their rights and economic interests is imperative."

Pantuso reiterated the ABA's stance against granting the CTA's exemption petition and invited Secretary Buttigieg for further dialogue on this pressing matter.

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