Saturday, July 26, 2014

LeeTran ridership numbers continue falling due to budget cuts

Since the budget cuts in November which reduced evening and weekend LeeTran services, BikeWalkLee has been tracking the monthly ridership numbers and has continued to express our concerns about the impact of these cuts.  

Since our last update in May, we now have two more months of LeeTran ridership reports, with May ridership down 7.5%, and June ridership down by 1.65% (compared to the same month the previous year).  Over the past 8 months, since the cuts went into effect, ridership has fallen on average 3.24% a month.  The following are the monthly numbers (compared to the same month the previous year):

October 2013:  +2.49% (before cuts)

Nov. 2013:        -3.55%

Dec. 2013:         +1.95%

Jan. 2014:           -8.36%

Feb. 2014:          -2.19%

March 2014:      -4.55%

April 2014:        -0.09%

May 2014:         -7.50%

June 2014:        -1.65%

8-mo. average:  -3.24%

The consistent ridership reductions are evidence of the negative impact these cuts are having on the transit system overall and on individual lives of our citizens who rely on transit to get to work and lead independent and productive lives. Since the cutbacks went into effect in mid-November, ridership numbers have fallen for the first time in years, after several years of record-breaking increases in ridership.

BikeWalkLee has consistently opposed cuts in LeeTran services and has called on commissioners to restore these cuts in next year's budget.  County Administration will present its draft FY 2014-15 budget to the Board at its August 5th budget workshop.  Now is the time for the public to share its views on transit services with its elected officials. 

See  BikeWalkLee's May 25th blog post, BikeWalkLee's April 18th blog postBikeWalkLee's April 10th blog post, and BikeWalkLee's April 8th letter to BoCC members, requesting the Board to restore the LeeTran service cuts in the County's "continuation budget" for FY 2014-15.

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