Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Long Island Bus Riders Union’ Calls on Veolia to Release Ridership Impact Data for Downsized Routes

Mineola, NY—Early this morning, the Long Island Bus Riders’ Union released an Open Letter to Mike Setzer, CEO of Veolia Transportation, calling on NICE bus to release a public analysis of the ridership impact of service cuts. The advocacy organization claimed that cutting midday and weekend service on routs has a huge impact on bus riders, and that these cuts decrease nearly 25% of the total service on each route. The group claims that in order to fully assess the impact of service changes, NICE bus must publically release their ridership data.

The Union emphasized that many bus riders already commute for over an hour to get to their job, and that doubling wait time on many routes will provide a substantial strain on working people in Nassau County.

The Bus Riders’ Union also called on NICE bus to allow a full vetting of the process by calling for a vote on the service adjustments from the Transit Advisory Committee; and called for printed English and Spanish schedules of service adjustments to be made widely available to the bus riding public.

“The majority of bus riders are not going to go to take three buses and a shuttle to get to a community meeting announcing service cuts, so NICE bus needs to get out in the community and talk to people about these adjustments and answer bus riders’ questions about their service,” said Charlene Obernauer, Executive Director of Long Island Jobs with Justice, the organization that founded the Bus Riders’ Union.

Bus riders gave Mr. Setzer a deadline of March 8 th to publically release the ridership data, one month before the service cuts will be implemented on April 8 th, 2012.