|Letter: Recent Article on BRTA Cuts|
|Letter to the Editor, |
03:30PM / Monday, July 30, 2018
To the Editor:
This past BRTA meeting was my first as a returning board member and it is very hard to see BRTA contending with the same basic problems there were when I left the board three years ago: lack of funding to cover its service area to meet the demand for more routes, evening and weekend service.
So much money from Berkshire County goes to fund eastern Massachusetts transportation and so little comes to BRTA, even after our Berkshire delegation has secured increased funding.
What we need to focus on now is making sure Berkshire County and Western Mass. have strong representation on the RTA Performance and Funding Task Force and that our unique transportation needs and challenges are taken into account. Let's not let this Task Force be eastern Mass. focused, as many state task forces seem to be. Hopefully, our Berkshire delegation will lobby the governor to make sure Western Mass., and especially Berkshire County, are well represented.
In the meantime, what wasn't reported was that BRTA didn't get a portion of another $2 million included in the RTA transportation money because its operations don't require a remedial plan — only those RTA operations that do share in that pot of money. No bonus dollars for those being run well.
The board is also committed to making sure any new pilot routes or adjusted route times provide more service to the largest number of riders possible.
Rene C. Wood