Ben Franklin Transit hearings heat up - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Ben Franklin Transit hearings heat up

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KENNEWICK, Wash. - Public comment on Ben Franklin Transit's plans to cut bus service heats up.

Ben Franklin Transit plans to cut services on about a half dozen holidays. They're also proposing Dial-A-Ride customers living outside the service area pay extra.

People from all over the community attended Wednesday's public hearings.

Bill Hoage is blind and depends on the transit system to get around. "I am blind, that's why I have this beautiful dog behind me," said Hoage.

With recent changes, Hoage has found out he lives in the area outside the service corridor, and will now have to pay $1.25 more for service.

He's disappointed about the cuts, knowing he voted for the sales tax Ben Franklin Transit uses to operate.

Transit representatives say they're just as disappointed as he is, but as sales tax revenue has gone down in the past year, they've had some tough decisions to make.

"It's been a hardship for everyone, but I think we're positioning ourselves so that in the future we can have a bright tomorrow," said Kathy McMullen with Ben Franklin Transit.

There is another public hearing scheduled at the Three Rivers Transit Center Thursday, August 20th at 10 a.m.