- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 17, 2016

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - School bus drivers in Hartford have gone on a one-day strike in a contract dispute, leaving nearly 9,000 students without rides to school.

About 100 drivers for contractor Dattco walked off the job Tuesday, calling it a last resort. Their contract expired last year. They’re seeking higher wages, paid time off and other benefits. Union members rejected a tentative contract agreement last month.

Hartford public school officials warned parents of the strike Monday and said students who miss school because of the strike will be given an excused absence.

Dattco officials called the strike careless and selfish, and not in the best interest of the drivers or the schools. They said average pay for Hartford drivers is $24 an hour.

Union members hope the strike restarts contract talks.

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