[Source: Casey Newton, Arizona Republic] — Early-morning and late-night bus hours will be eliminated and Saturday service reduced in Phoenix as the city makes unprecedented budget cuts. On Tuesday, the City Council voted unanimously to eliminate all trips before 5 a.m. and after 10 p.m. In addition, Saturday service will be reduced to match Sunday levels, a reduction of 24%. The reductions go into effect Dec. 29, leaving thousands of people to find new ways of getting from place to place.
Transit advocates and bus riders protested the move, saying that eliminating bus service would disproportionately affect the poor and residents with disabilities. Donna Powers, who uses a wheelchair, said reducing bus service would make it harder for transit-dependent people to work and shop, compounding the city’s economic woes. “If people can’t ride, there’s going to be less buying,” Powers said. “We tend to overlook the fact.” [Note: To read the full article, click here.]