Seniors say CTA changes would mean longer hikes to bus stops

Seniors say CTA changes would mean longer hikes to bus stops

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Because of budget shortfalls some Biloxi senior citizens may have to make a longer hike to get to the nearest bus stop. On Monday, the Coast Transit Authority held a public hearing so people could see the changes being proposed in order to save money.

If CTA eliminates bus service on Division Street, on Howard Avenue and in the area just west of Caillavet Street and east of Keesler Air Force Base some Biloxi residents will have to walk a longer way to catch a ride to the grocery store, the library or the doctor's office.

Deanna Dubuisson said, "I go to Back Bay Mission. I get my medicine over there on Division Street right across from it and I'd have to walk in the cold and just be miserable especially when it's raining."

At a public meeting, transit officials told riders the cuts are necessary because CTA is receiving less funding from Biloxi and Harrison County.

"I understand why they're having to make the cuts, but I feel like there are some funding issues that should be addressed by the City of Biloxi and maybe they wouldn't have to cut some many routes," said Amelia Tomsik, a bus rider.

If routes are cut back or eliminated, some seniors said they'll have no choice but to hike it the extra distance to the bus stop.

Patricia White said, "I'm just going to have to, as long as I can, walk more distances to get to places."

CTA Director Kevin Coggin said he plans to meet with officials from all the Biloxi casinos in the coming weeks to discuss CTA's proposal to increase the casino hopper intervals from 20 minutes to 45 minutes and eliminate the service all together on Sundays. The proposal calls for the only service to operate in Biloxi on Sundays to be the Pass Road route which would have a 90 minute turnaround time.

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