"Good morning, sir!" exclaimed Maureen Scallen Failor, president of the Bloomington Chamber of Commerce, as she handed a leaflet to a sleepy commuter waiting for a bus at the Lakeville park-and-ride early Wednesday morning.
The literature decried a 40-percent cut in bus, light rail and commuter rail service that the Metropolitan Council says will occur if a Republican-led transportation budget bill moves forward at the Legislature. Between 20 and 70 of Metro Transit's 151 bus routes could be eliminated, and "thousands" of trips pared, the council claims.
The Minneapolis Regional and St. Paul chambers of commerce and the transit advocacy group East Metro Strong have launched an information campaign and website to alert the public about possible cuts. Transportation Forward, a coalition led by Transit for Livable Communities & St. Paul Smart Trips, also is holding a rally May 16 to support transit.