Greyhound says it left Jackson due ‘to poor conditions’ and ‘lack of improvement’ at the bus station
JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Greyhound Buses won’t be rolling up, in, or out of the capital city for the time being.
“Greyhound failed to pay $617,250 in holdover rent to JRA, the entity that owns Union Station, an amount that has been on the books since before March 2020,” the lawsuit states.
However, Gilda Brewton, who’s a district manager for the bus company, said she’s surprised by the lawsuit.
Brewton said Greyhound has fulfilled its duties as a tenant and it should not be on the hooks to pay that amount.
“We’ve been in JRA for many years, and we had approached them several, many times, about making improvements at the facility to improve our customer experience, and our employee experience, and there were also safety concerns,” said Brewton.
According to Brewton, for years the company has been asking JRA to help fix leaks and remove mold inside the bus station..
She alleges those requests fell on deaf ears, resulting in the company looking to move locations.
Brewton also said according to the contract, JRA was supposed to provide security at the station.
The district manager said that didn’t happen, and that Greyhound had to provide its own security.
“We had made them aware of our intentions from the beginning of the year, we needed a better environment for our customers, again, no response,” said Brewton. “They knew throughout the year that we were making plans to seek better accommodations for us.”
According to court records, Greyhound argued that it didn’t owe the money, and deserved an offset in rental fees due to expenses incurred at the station.
Meanwhile, JRA alleges that the company has yet to remove an underground storage tank and related above-ground equipment that Greyhound was supposed to close in place or remove at the end of its lease.
“To date, Greyhound has not contacted JRA regarding the fuel tank, and has taken no action to either close or remove it,” JRA wrote in its complaint. “The continued presence of the fuel tank creates actual and/or potential problems for JRA, including the presence of a safety hazard, and the likelihood of creation and/or exacerbation of contaminants and similar environmental hazards that will violate [environmental] laws.”
The authority tells the court that Greyhound’s failure to remove the tank means JRA will have to take action on its own.
Brewton said the company is waiting to hear back from JRA before moving forward.
“The choice does not belong to us, it belongs to JRA, and JRA has not gotten back with us to tell us how they want to resolve it,” said Brewton. “We’re prepared to take care of it as soon as they give us access and tell us how they want us to handle it.”
Although Greyhound is no longer in Jackson, Brewton said the company is looking to find another location.
Greyhound could not give a timeline on how soon it’ll be before they find one, only saying they hope to have a place picked out in the near future.
Right now, the closest bus terminal is in Vicksburg.
Want more WLBT news in your inbox? Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.
Copyright 2022 WLBT. All rights reserved.