General Employment FAQS
ARE MEDICAL BENEFITS AVAILABLE TO PART-TIME EMPLOYEES?
No. Part-time employees are not eligible for medical benefits
DOES COTA OFFER TUITION REIMBURSEMENT?
Yes, currently COTA does offer tuition reimbursement after 1 year of service.
HOW DOES COTA PROVIDE SAFETY FOR ITS BUS OPERATORS?
All COTA busses are equipped with video and audio recording equipment. In addition, the operator has immediate contact with the radio room to request assistance, street supervisors can be dispatched to the operator’s location, and Columbus Police Officers in COTA-owned police cruisers are on the street for immediate assistance.
CAN I WORK AS A BUS OPERATOR ON A PART-TIME BASIS?
No. All Bus Operators work on a full-time basis.
I DON’T HAVE A COMMERCIAL DRIVER’S LICENSE (CDL). CAN I STILL APPLY?
Yes. You only have to have a CDL permit to start training, which you obtain by passing a written test at the Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
WHAT TRAINING WILL I GET AND IS IT PAID?
The training is eight weeks long and you will take the CDL driving test at the end of training. You are paid $12.10/hour while in training.
WHAT IS THE PAY RATE AFTER TRAINING?
$17.50/hour. You will receive annual pay increases with the top pay being $25.8 after seven years of service based on the current contract.
WHAT WILL MY WORK SCHEDULE BE LIKE?
As a new Operator, you will be assigned to the Extra Board. On the Extra Board, you will have no set schedule. You might be scheduled to start early in the morning to late at night working a split schedule. Also, you will work most week-ends and holidays. We have a schedule bidding process every four months. As your seniority grows, your likelihood of getting a set schedule will become greater.
WHEN DO I GET BENEFITS?
You are eligible for benefits the first day of the month in which your 90th day of employment occurs.
I HAVE YEARS OF EXPERIENCE DRIVING A SCHOOL BUS. WILL MY TRAINING BE SHORTER THAN EIGHT WEEKS?
No. COTA focuses on safety. All new operators are required to successfully complete the eight weeks of training in the COTA program.
I HAVE SEVERAL MOVING VIOLATIONS. WILL THIS AFFECT MY BEING CONSIDERED?
We conduct extensive background checks for moving violations and criminal convictions. We look at each conviction on a case-by-case basis to determine the eligibility of each applicant. Even though you may have a conviction, we do encourage you to apply.