Council delays vote on crucial GRTC service change proposals

Posted at 10:12 PM, Sep 09, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-10 00:44:06-04

RICHMOND, Va (WTVR) -- Getting around town is no easy task for one Richmond man.

Now, he’s worried that his mobility will be further limited if GRTC has its way.

“You’re going into some real dangerous water I really don't think GRTC wants to go into,” says GRTC Care Van Rider, Timothy Smalls.

Smalls is urging Richmond City Council members not to vote for a plan that would increase the rate for GRTC’s Care service from $2.50 to $3, double the charge for special trips to the surrounding counties, and reduce rides to just weekdays between 6 a.m. - 8 p.m.,  in addition to cutting service completely on weekends and holidays.

“The fact that they want to do that and raise the fares, no, something has to give,” says Smalls.

Smalls and his friends were planning to give council members an earful Monday night, before they voted on the plan. However, council decided to delay the vote again, leaving Smalls and his friends waiting and wondering about their main source of transportation.

“This would be our third trip up here and my wife took a vacation day. She rides every day and rides it five days a week. She took a vacation day so she could ride here and not be late,” says GRTC Care Van Rider, Shirley Harris.

Council members tell CBS 6 reporter Lorenzo Hall, that they are late making a decision because this is a delicate issue and there’s a lot to consider.

“A cut has to be made because of budgetary constraints. It's just which decision is made that is least disruptive to the people that use the system,” says Richmond City Council Member, Jon Baliles.

City Council will take up this issue again on September 23rd.