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Monday, March 22, 2010

TriMet Will Only Cut Three Bus Lines!

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Mon, Mar 22, 2010 at 3:30 PM

This is so expected that maybe it's not even worth reporting on but here you go: after six weeks of open houses and 1,000 public comments received about TriMet's plans to cut four bus lines, the agency has decided to only cut three bus lines.

On the chopping block are 27-Market/Main, 65-Marquam Hill and 157-Happy Valley. No weekend lines will be cut, but some service will be reduced. All MAX lines will also have "some changes," which are not yet spelled out. TriMet is making the cuts (including a five percent across-the-board pay cut) to plug a $27 million budget hole.

The announcement of these lesser cuts eerily mirrors what happened in the round of transit cuts last year, when TriMet announced five bus lines would die but then lowered that number to four after public comment. It's the highball pitch technique employed in public input processes everywhere. Like when that one bridge project asked for a $4.2 billion budget and then scaled it back to a "reasonable" $2.6-3.6 billion.

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