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Clallam Transit delays decision about holidays

Additional public hearings are planned on Clallam Transit System's proposal to eliminate service on three federal holidays plus the Friday after Thanksgiving, says Terry Weed, Clallam Transit's general manager.

One is set for 1 p.m. Monday, March 15, in the Sequim Transit Center, 190 W. Cedar St. Another is planned for Forks.

"After Monday's public hearing, the board chose to add additional public hearings to this discussion," Weed said.

Service would be eliminated on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the third Monday in January; Presidents Day, the third Monday in February; Veterans Day, Nov. 11; and the fourth Friday in November, the day after Thanksgiving.

Services eliminated would be fixed route, dial-a-ride and Paratransit. Fixed route and dial-a-ride average about 2,292 trips on each of the four holidays. Paratransit averages about 112 trips. The reduction is about 9,280 passenger trips per year for all services.

The change would take effect July 1, 2010, which would affect only Veterans Day and Thanksgiving Friday this year, with the entire service reduction starting in 2011.

Clallam Transit staff estimates the proposal would save $64,000 as part of a cost-reduction and revenue-generating plan to avoid widespread service reductions.

"It's not finalized yet because there's a series of proposed fare and service changes." Weed said.

"On one hand, we want to give people adequate time to study and comment on them but we also don't want to inundate them.

"All these proposals are budget-driven. They are a series of steps staff is bringing to the board to reduce expenses or increase revenue. It's simply a budget-saving mechanism."



Paratransit

pact OK'd

Clallam Paratransit Service's 28 union employees approved a three-year agreement Sunday, Feb. 28, averting a strike.

Amalgamated Transit Union Local 587 represents 28 drivers, dispatchers and schedulers.

The contract provides a 2-percent wage increase in the first year, a cost-of-living increase of 2 percent to 5 percent in the second year and a cost-of-living increase of 2.5 percent to 5 percent in the third year.

Clallam Paratransit and its labor union entered federal mediation Feb. 17 after two days of negotiations failed to produce a new contract.

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