Nov 5, 2009 4:42 AM by Nicole Vandeputte

"Please don't cut the bus," plea from disabled

To make up for the budget shortfall in Colorado Springs, city leaders say they need to make big cuts. That includes fire and police jobs, parks, and our bus system. It's the cuts to our transit that could cost some folks in our community the loss of their jobs, and their freedom.

Marlin Caris is proud. He's worked for more than a decade at the Goodwill in Colorado Springs. Marlin is developmentally disabled. Cynthia Horbath helps helps him live an independent lifestyle through Cheyenne Village. It's a non-profit that helps about 80 people in Colorado Springs. Horbath says, "Some of our clients might not be able to keep their jobs."

She says the bus means more than just a ride to work. "It's not just going to work. It's being able to access things on their own; keep their independence, going to the grocery store on their own, get their snack that they want, she says.
Marlin has already taken a hit. Earlier this year the city cut 50,000 hours of transit. That meant less routes. That made Marlin's 20 minute trip to work, one that's now an hour long. Now, the city is looking to cut another 62,000 hours. That would mean eliminating weekend and evening service. It would also eliminate whole routes, including the FREX service to Denver.

Horbath says, "It would be a tragedy for them to not to be able to go out on their own."

So, they're hoping city leaders can find money somewhere other than our buses.


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