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PVTA Service Cuts Begin


A series of service cuts begin Sunday ( August 27th) affecting passengers of the largest regional transit system in western Massachusetts.

The Pioneer Valley Transit Authority is eliminating or reducing service on 22 bus routes to close a $1.7 million budget gap.

The changes start first in the greater Springfield area followed by Northampton and Amherst on September 3rd.

Eric Baur, an organizer with Jobs with Justice, said low- income people will be impacted the most.

" The bus routes are going to affect 1,200 riders per day and a half-million riders per year," Baur said at July 19th meeting of the PVTA Advisory Board where the service cuts were approved.

PVTA officials blame a cut in state aid and rising labor, health care, and fuel costs for the budget squeeze.

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston. He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester. Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011. Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.