As we recently have noted, bus and light rail service cuts are “probably’ coming soon. Here is a copy of a press release issued today giving people a reminder of their opportunity to participate in the process.
Provide input on potential METRO service changes
PHOENIX — Two public meetings are scheduled to hear rider input on service change options for METRO light rail. Any changes would occur in July 2010.
Tues., March 2, 6 – 8 p.m.
METRO light rail boardroom
101 N. 1st Ave., Ste. 1300, Phoenix
Closest station: Washington/Central Ave. (westbound) or Van Buren/1st Ave. (eastbound)
Tues., March 9, 6 – 8 p.m.
Tempe Transportation Center
Don Cassano Community Room
200 E. Fifth St., Tempe
Closest station: Veterans Way/College Ave.
Changes are being considered to address a decline in sales tax revenue as a result of the slow economy. Sales tax revenue is the largest funding source for transit service Valleywide; fare revenue supports the balance of operating costs at approximately 25 percent. While METRO ridership has surpassed all first-year projections, riders’ fare revenue contribution cannot keep up with the drop in sales tax collections.
Public input will help METRO and its member cities determine the fiscal year 2010 – 11 METRO operating budget and schedule. The budget is scheduled for Board approval in the May timeframe with any changes occurring on July 26, 2010.
Review the service change options and other opportunities for comment at www.metrolightrail.org.
METRO is responsible for the development and operation of the region’s high-capacity transit system. The first 20-mile light rail line opened Dec. 27, 2008 and served 11.3 million riders in 2009. Ridership exceeds projections by 34 percent on weekdays and fairs as well or better on Saturdays and Sundays. METRO will continue to refine its 20-mile operation, while also planning for 37 miles of future extensions.