Monday, March 8, 2010

Note from a Board Member

By Ted Hikel, Community Transit Board Member

I have been an elected official for eighteen years. The vote I cast last week to suspend Sunday and holiday service was the most difficult one I have ever taken. No one on the Board of Directors, no one from the top of the administration to the bus drivers, from the Ride Store employees to the mechanics wanted this to happen.

Please understand that the most disappointed and unhappy people are not only our bus riders but also the whole Community Transit family. We were faced with making the best decision from a list of unfortunate choices. But the bottom line is the bottom line and there is not enough money to continue the current level of service. 

 Funding Community Transit or any public bus service based on sales tax revenue is not sustainable in an economic downturn. That is why all of us must work with the state legislature and federal officials to find a way to fund public transit so we will never face this situation again. I pledge to you that I will work over the next two years to find that solution.

The Board of Directors did create a $50,000 fund to assist church groups and community organizations to help provide limited service through volunteer programs for our most affected patrons. Our highest priority is to reinstate service as soon as funds will allow. Americans have always displayed their best qualities in times of adversity. Now is the time for neighbors to reach out to our neighbors who need our help.

Ted Hikel, Council President
City of Lynnwood
Board Member, Community Transit

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