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Keeping area transit service a good move

Apr. 30, 2013 @ 11:05 PM

New federal funding rules have caused considerable upheaval for area communities' public transportation systems, and they are in the process of trying to adjust.

The fallout has meant that a larger portion of federal money must go for capital expenses, leaving many systems in the area figuring out how to cope with less money for operational expenses. The Tri-State Transit Authority in Huntington and operations in Ironton and Ashland have felt the sting to varying degrees.

Also affected was the Wayne Express system in Wayne County, so much so that it will cease transit service in Ceredo and Kenova as of June 30. That will leave a void for people in those two communities who rely on public transportation to get around.

Fortunately, the Tri-State Transit Authority is in a position to pick up the slack.

Starting July 1, the TTA plans to offer an hourly service in those two neighboring communities beginning at 6:10 a.m. each day and ending at 6:15 each evening, assuming Ceredo, Kenova and the Wayne County Commission contribute toward the service. TTA is asking $2,500 each from Ceredo and Kenova and $5,000 from the Wayne County Commission. Those contributions seem worthwhile to maintain public transit in those areas.

TTA board member Rebecca Thacker said last week that she had received a number of phone calls from people interested in TTA service in that area. "There are elderly down there who are frustrated," she said.

Let's hope TTA's plan to serve the area will ease those residents' concerns.



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