NEW: Worries over RIPTA Route Cutback in Northern RI

Monday, July 25, 2011


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Local state senators and representatives will host a public hearing regarding RIPTA’s plan to reduce frequency of Route 9 bus route on Monday, August 1.

If sustained, the plan would reduce frequency of bus trips on Route 9, which runs between Providence and Burrillville, through North Providence, Smithfield and Glocester. Route 9, which is the only public transportation route running through northwest Rhode Island, has been targeted for reduction and elimination several times in the past, each time receiving strong opposition from public and local leaders, according to a Statehouse news release.

The RIPTA faces a $4.6 million budget hole and is considering cutting up to 10 percent of its services, affecting 39 of its routes in 35 cities and towns.

Opponents of the reduction argue that in a time of sustained high unemployment and general economic recession, eliminating public transportation would cripple many people’s ability to find and keep potential employment.

Local legislators who will be hosting the hearing include: Sen. Paul W. Fogarty (D-Dist. 23, Glocester, Burrillville, North Smithfield), Sen. John J. Tassoni Jr. (D-Dist. 22, Smithfield, North Smithfield), Rep. Thomas Winfield (D-Dist. 53, Smithfield, Glocester), Rep. Cale P. Keable (D-Dist. 47, Burrillville, Glocester), Rep. Peter J. Petrarca (D-Dist. 44, Lincoln, Smithfield, Johnston), Minority Leader Brian C. Newberry (R-Dist. 48, Burrillville, North Smithfield) and Rep. Michael W. Chippendale (R-Dist. 40, Foster, Glocester, Coventry).

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