Public Speaks Out About Yakima Transit System Cuts - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Public Speaks Out About Yakima Transit System Cuts

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UPDATE/YAKIMA, WA. - At their meeting Tuesday, the Yakima City Council voted to defer a vote to change Bus Route One and eliminate Bus Route Eight.

The council said they will hold a study session and then decide what to do with the bus routes.

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YAKIMA, WA -- "We're going to have to walk a mile to the nearest  bus stop," said Lori Lukin, who rides the bus out of West Valley.

The concern is heard from many people who ride the bus between West Valley and downtown Yakima, and soon that concern may become a reality.

"The more inconvenient you make riding the buses, the less people will ride them," said bus rider, Robert Strader.

Tuesday night city council will decide if they will change Route One and the city said this would save about $300,000, but some riders said these buses are necessary to the area.

"It's going to impact quite a number of people who ride the bus," said Royal Schoen.

The city manager said these cuts are what need to be done because Routes One and Eight have the lowest ridership and they do not create enough revenue to keep them going.

"It's not very cost effective and if we can save $300,000 that would go towards sustaining and maintaining our other routes which are much more heavily traveled and used," Said City Manager, Tony O'Rourke.

"They can ride share, they can get someone to drop them off on 72nd street to pick up the there," O'Rourke added.

But for many, those solutions are not an option

"Not being able to get where we need to go on time, I mean that's going to make it so we won't get here for an hour," Lukin said.

"I'm strongly against these cuts and if anything, I think the buses should be made more convenient to ride and there should be more of them," Strader said.

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