Greater City Providence

RIPTA submits service/jobs cuts plan to board of directors

Solitary RIPTA bus in Kennedy Plaza

ProJo reports this morning on RIPTA’s plan for service cuts and job reductions to address current budget defecit.

The proposals would reduce the frequency of service on 13 routes, mostly in the evening, and bring a variety of other schedule changes and reductions to save slightly more than $1 million.

The proposals would also eliminate 32 jobs, including 13 maintenance positions, 9 supervisory positions and 10 administrative positions, saving $1.4 million. Some work, such as plowing snow and doing other clean-up tasks, would be outsourced. But some workers would be laid off.

Oh, and Congress may reduce money that RIPTA gets from the Feds by 30%. From RIPTA:

Safe and Reliable Public Transportation is at Risk!

Congress has proposed to cut more than one-third of federal funding across the board for public transit and surface transportation programs. If these cuts are implemented, transit riders can expect service delays, fare increases and over-crowding.

The proposed cuts to funding will increase unemployment and leave many Americans stranded without access to their jobs and basic services such as grocery stores, doctors and faith services.


Show your support on Tuesday, September 20, 2011 by wearing red and/or attending the Don’t X Out Transit Providence Rally in Kennedy Plaza, in front of City Hall, at 10AM. RIPTA bus drivers will show their support by wearing red “Don’t X Out Public Transit” t-shirts.

How Will RIPTA be Affected if Congress Makes These Cuts?

  • Unable to replace buses and vans as scheduled – more road calls
  • Cuts to Maintenance
  • Less money to pay maintenance staff to clean & repair buses
  • Less money to clean & repair facilities, including local construction contracts
  • Less money for bus parts, such as wheelchair lifts, brake parts & more
  • Less money for Planning
  • Reductions to support equipment – tools, computers, supplies

The following programs would be cut by 1/3:

  • ADA Cost reimbursement
  • Security investments
  • TransArt Shelter Program

For more information, visit

Jef Nickerson

Jef is Greater City Providence's co-founder, editor, and publisher. He grew up on Cape Cod and lived in Boston; Portland, Maine; and New York before settling in Providence. In addition to urbanism, Jef is interested in art, design, and ice cream. Please feel free to contact Jef if you have any question or comments about Greater City Providence.


  • Still, this might not get us out of the hole that RIPTA is in, but wouldn’t rates based on zone and distance at least do something to help the situation? Why pay the same amount to travel several blocks as one would to travel 20 miles? Seems simple enough.

  • I thought they talked about raising the fares for some of the park-n-ride buses and other “specialty” buses while leaving the rest of the system at $2?

  • I agree there should be a higher fare for some of the longer rides, which would also give an incentive for ADA van and taxi riders (who pay twice the fare for such door to door service) to request shorter trips. As it is now, an ADA rider pays $4 each way of they go a few blocks or if they go from Newport to Woonsocket, but it costs RIPTA plenty. At a recent hearing, they said on average it costs RIPTA about $22 per passenger for a van ride, $32 if they have to use a taxi. (I estimate about $4.50 for a regular bus ride.)
    But it won’t help the budget very much, sooner or later it has to be confronted that the revenue stream from a declining gas tax just is not enough to maintain our transit system. RIDOT has rthe same problem with regard to our roads and bridges. At least Governor Chafee took the first steps to address this, but the anti-tax zealots make maintaining our transportation systems problematic.

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