Moving to a new operator(s)

On 24 October 2019, the New South Wales Government announced that State Transit’s three regions – Regions 7, 8 and 9 – would be put out to tender as part of wider changes to the Sydney bus network. Outlined below are key questions on the tender process, key aspects of the contractual agreement and the proposed timeline.

When and how will staff transfer to the new operator(s)?

The proposed timeline for the transition to new operator(s) of Regions 7, 8 and 9 will be staggered. It is proposed that the first region to go to tender will be Region 8 in the middle of June 2020, followed by Region 7 in August 2020 and Region 9 in November 2020. The process of transitioning all three Regions of STA is expected to be complete by early 2022. Frequently Asked Questions with respect to the proposed timeline and approach can be found here.

State Transit and Transport for NSW are committed to ensuring staff remain informed and will consult and update staff and union representatives during the tender and transition process.

How will staff be consulted over changes resulting from the tender announcement?

Staff will be consulted and kept informed about the tender and transition to the private operator(s).

A regular consultative group with the unions is also proposed, which would meet throughout the tender and transition process.

Regular updates on the transition will be provided to staff through a range of communications, including the Blink staff app, the weekly CEO message, Digital Depot, intranet, a dedicated website www.stayinformed.com.au/statetransit, information sessions and staff notices on depot notice boards. Your managers will also be kept informed. Employees who have questions can also email the People and Culture team at stayinformed@transport.nsw.gov.au.

What did the Government announce about changes to other bus contract areas?

The NSW Government has announced it will re-tender the 10 privately operated Sydney Metropolitan Bus Service Contracts (SMBSCs) in a number of tranches when they start to expire.

These contracts cover the greater Sydney metropolitan area and have been run by the private sector for many years.

Why is the Government tendering the remaining State Transit contracts?

The tenders will create an opportunity for a new generation of bus contracts that will transform the current model of service delivery, to one with multiple types, including high capacity routes and local and on demand travel.

How will the government select the new operator(s) for all of these regions?

The NSW Government is inviting proposals to operate these regions through a competitive tender process. This will be via an open market process.

What will happen to buses and other State Transit assets?

The NSW Government will continue to own all buses and depots in Regions 7, 8 and 9 and will continue to regulate fares, timetables, routes and bus stops, and ensure strict safety and operational standards.

Will the NSW Government continue to have an ongoing role with buses?

Yes. The new operator(s) will have a contract with Transport for NSW.

Under the contract, the NSW Government will set minimum service standards and performance indicators, but the operator(s) will have a level of autonomy to plan and run services.

The government will continue to own the buses and other assets such as depots, and will continue to set fares and timetables, and regulate strict safety and operational standards.

Private operator(s) will have to meet high performance standards for safety, reliability, customer satisfaction and cleanliness.

Who will the operators be accountable to?

The new operator(s) will be accountable to the government through its contract with Transport for NSW.

Who will set the fares for the new operator(s)? Will they go up?

The government will continue to make the final decisions on fares as they do now. Passengers will continue to use their Opal cards as they do today.

How can you guarantee a private company would keep servicing all local stops?

Buses in Regions 7, 8 and 9 will operate under a contract with Transport for NSW which will include minimum service standards.

The new operator(s) will have a level of autonomy to work with the community and undertake the consultation process required to design a network that meets local needs but the government will always have the final say.

Will the new operator(s) listen to us about how to provide public transport services?

The focus of the new operator(s) will be to deliver services and grow patronage that meets the needs of public transport users. We expect any new operator(s) to work closely with staff to deliver the best services possible for customers. The new operator(s) is expected to deliver services to meet greater Sydney’s needs.

Will the new operator(s) keep the existing depots? Will I have to change where I travel to work?

Changes to working arrangements, including to schedules and depots, will be done in accordance with the relevant Award or Enterprise Agreement and policies in place at the time.

How will safety standards be maintained under private operation? Who will keep them accountable for maintenance?

All public and private bus operators in NSW are required to observe mandatory safety standards under the terms of their contract with Transport for NSW. The fleet will also continue to be inspected by authorised officers from Transport on a regular basis.

Will the new operator(s) be a Registered Training Organisation (RTO)?

The current RTO for State Transit is Transport for NSW. The new operator(s) will have an obligation to honour the terms of any traineeship/apprenticeship current at the time of transfer.

The need for ongoing traineeships will be a matter for the new operator(s) to consider. If the new operator(s) is not an RTO, it would engage an external provider in accordance with its needs.



On 24 October 2019, the New South Wales Government announced that State Transit’s three regions – Regions 7, 8 and 9 – would be put out to tender as part of wider changes to the Sydney bus network. Outlined below are key questions on the tender process, key aspects of the contractual agreement and the proposed timeline.

When and how will staff transfer to the new operator(s)?

The proposed timeline for the transition to new operator(s) of Regions 7, 8 and 9 will be staggered. It is proposed that the first region to go to tender will be Region 8 in the middle of June 2020, followed by Region 7 in August 2020 and Region 9 in November 2020. The process of transitioning all three Regions of STA is expected to be complete by early 2022. Frequently Asked Questions with respect to the proposed timeline and approach can be found here.

State Transit and Transport for NSW are committed to ensuring staff remain informed and will consult and update staff and union representatives during the tender and transition process.

How will staff be consulted over changes resulting from the tender announcement?

Staff will be consulted and kept informed about the tender and transition to the private operator(s).

A regular consultative group with the unions is also proposed, which would meet throughout the tender and transition process.

Regular updates on the transition will be provided to staff through a range of communications, including the Blink staff app, the weekly CEO message, Digital Depot, intranet, a dedicated website www.stayinformed.com.au/statetransit, information sessions and staff notices on depot notice boards. Your managers will also be kept informed. Employees who have questions can also email the People and Culture team at stayinformed@transport.nsw.gov.au.

What did the Government announce about changes to other bus contract areas?

The NSW Government has announced it will re-tender the 10 privately operated Sydney Metropolitan Bus Service Contracts (SMBSCs) in a number of tranches when they start to expire.

These contracts cover the greater Sydney metropolitan area and have been run by the private sector for many years.

Why is the Government tendering the remaining State Transit contracts?

The tenders will create an opportunity for a new generation of bus contracts that will transform the current model of service delivery, to one with multiple types, including high capacity routes and local and on demand travel.

How will the government select the new operator(s) for all of these regions?

The NSW Government is inviting proposals to operate these regions through a competitive tender process. This will be via an open market process.

What will happen to buses and other State Transit assets?

The NSW Government will continue to own all buses and depots in Regions 7, 8 and 9 and will continue to regulate fares, timetables, routes and bus stops, and ensure strict safety and operational standards.

Will the NSW Government continue to have an ongoing role with buses?

Yes. The new operator(s) will have a contract with Transport for NSW.

Under the contract, the NSW Government will set minimum service standards and performance indicators, but the operator(s) will have a level of autonomy to plan and run services.

The government will continue to own the buses and other assets such as depots, and will continue to set fares and timetables, and regulate strict safety and operational standards.

Private operator(s) will have to meet high performance standards for safety, reliability, customer satisfaction and cleanliness.

Who will the operators be accountable to?

The new operator(s) will be accountable to the government through its contract with Transport for NSW.

Who will set the fares for the new operator(s)? Will they go up?

The government will continue to make the final decisions on fares as they do now. Passengers will continue to use their Opal cards as they do today.

How can you guarantee a private company would keep servicing all local stops?

Buses in Regions 7, 8 and 9 will operate under a contract with Transport for NSW which will include minimum service standards.

The new operator(s) will have a level of autonomy to work with the community and undertake the consultation process required to design a network that meets local needs but the government will always have the final say.

Will the new operator(s) listen to us about how to provide public transport services?

The focus of the new operator(s) will be to deliver services and grow patronage that meets the needs of public transport users. We expect any new operator(s) to work closely with staff to deliver the best services possible for customers. The new operator(s) is expected to deliver services to meet greater Sydney’s needs.

Will the new operator(s) keep the existing depots? Will I have to change where I travel to work?

Changes to working arrangements, including to schedules and depots, will be done in accordance with the relevant Award or Enterprise Agreement and policies in place at the time.

How will safety standards be maintained under private operation? Who will keep them accountable for maintenance?

All public and private bus operators in NSW are required to observe mandatory safety standards under the terms of their contract with Transport for NSW. The fleet will also continue to be inspected by authorised officers from Transport on a regular basis.

Will the new operator(s) be a Registered Training Organisation (RTO)?

The current RTO for State Transit is Transport for NSW. The new operator(s) will have an obligation to honour the terms of any traineeship/apprenticeship current at the time of transfer.

The need for ongoing traineeships will be a matter for the new operator(s) to consider. If the new operator(s) is not an RTO, it would engage an external provider in accordance with its needs.



Page last updated: 18 June 2020, 16:29