Friday, April 8, 2011

Community Transit to Cut Another 20%: Hearing Announced

In another piece of sad transit news yesterday, Community Transit announced that they will be cutting service by another 20% next February.  This will bring the totality of their cuts to 35%, which is the same amount that Piece Transit will be cutting this fall.  Unlike Pierce Transit, Community Transit is maxed out on their state allowed sales tax at .9% so they do not have an option to ask voters to save their bus service.

The Seattle Times and Seattle Transit Blog broke the story yesterday.  Lindblom's story did a good job telling the story that bus cuts are a regional and statewide problem.  No transit agency is safe from this recession with volatile sales tax as their only option for funding transit.

We are working hard right now to encourage people to turnout to the Pierce Transit hearings on the proposed cuts that disproportionally high ridership routes.  The first hearing on that is at 4pm at PT's headquarters in Lakewood.  We'll do similar engagement and turnout efforts for the community transit hearings.

It is not an easy time for bus service in Washington State right now.  I think this news highlights the need for the Legislature to come up with short term and long term funding solution to prevent draconian cuts to transit service.  One more positive thing to remember is in the last 4 years 15/18 transit ballot measures in Washington have passed, which tells us that even in tough times citizens will often support their transit service.  Unfortunately for Community Transit they do not even have the option to ask voters for temporary help.  More on this soon, I am sure. 

Here is the list of public meetings from CT:
Open House meetings: 
Mountlake Terrace Library, Large Meeting Room
Address: 23300 58th Ave W, Mountlake Terrace
Date: Monday, June 6
6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Edmonds Community College, Snohomish Hall, Room 0304
20000 68th Ave W, Lynnwood
Tuesday, June 7
2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Monroe High School Performing Arts Center
17001 Tester Road, Monroe
Wednesday, June 15
6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Everett Station, Weyerhaeuser Room
3201 Smith Avenue, Everett
Wednesday, June 22
10 a.m. – noon
City of Arlington Community Room, Hadley Hall
18513 59th Avenue NE, Arlington
Thursday, June 23
5 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Rider Forums
Dates and Times TBD
Community Transit staff will hold rider forums at park & rides and transit centers throughout Snohomish County.

Public Hearing:
Rose Hill Community Center
304 Lincoln Avenue, Mukilteo
Thursday, July 7
5 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

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