The Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board is seeking a court order to halt Unit 5's plans to outsource its bus service. Acting on behalf of the newly-formed union representing about 200 bus drivers and monitors, the IELRB wants a judge to invalidate the contract the school district signed with First Student earlier this month. School officials say the shift to privatizing the bus service was done to end long delays experienced last fall and at other times. The district is downplaying the $1.5 million dollar annual cost savings it says the move will provide tax payers, but union members say the move is financially-motivated. An representative of the union says members are concerned about the loss of state retirement benefits and the chilling effect privatization will have on collective bargaining.
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