Like a lot of public transportation systems, Galveston’s Island Transit depends heavily on federal support. But the community lost population after Hurricane Ike, so that means fewer dollars from Washington.
Galveston Assistant City Manager Rick Beverlin says it costs over $4 million a year to run Island Transit. That leaves local government to make up the difference.
“We are up to in the budget approximately $800,000 on paper,” explains Beverlin. “But in reality at the end of the year they’re putting it over a million dollars.”
To keep Island Transit afloat, Galveston is thinking about changing its night and weekend service. Instead of the current routes officials are considering a circulator bus. Beverlin says they’re also looking at subsidized taxi service for disabled riders.
“This is a preemptive planning exercise to make sure that we don’t have any big surprises when we get to the next fiscal year,” adds Beverlin.
Galveston transit riders can learn more about the proposed changes at a public meeting Wednesday afternoon. It’s from 4:00 to 6:00 PM in the Galveston City Council Chambers.