This letter is to show how the decisions of the recent Sunset Empire Transportation District (SETD) catastrophe is affecting my life, as well as all Clatsop County citizens who use the bus.
First off, I have had quite a few issues about how the bus has handled their previous bus service. Today, the issue is of how an accidental $80,000 has been mishandled, and another $180,000 is due for insurance reasons, causing major changes affecting our community citizens and the 30 employees The Bus will lay off.
These are the ways this problem has affected in my life. I am 22 years old and disabled. Aside from living in Portland for two years after graduating from Astoria High School, I have been a citizen of this town my whole life. I have lived on my own for the last four years. Since I have lived on my own, and had to sell my car before I earned my drivers license, I have used the bus system as my main way of transportation.
The bus has mostly given me great service. Since I moved back to the area last March, I have been actively searching for a part-time job. I just started, in the last three months, being invited for interviews. Although they have been unsuccessful, I am positive I will get a job in the near future.
Now, as most of you know, our bus only runs every hour, aside from the 30-minute bus service in the early morning and late afternoon. There is no reason buses should not come every 30 minutes if you can do it in the morning and afternoon, you can do it all day.
When I finally get a job, it is possible, that there will not be bus service anywhere near my home on West Lexington Avenue. Even with the previous services, I have to ride my wheelchair on a 15-minute trip to Peter Pan market.
Now I may be forced to turn down a job offer, that I have been waiting so long to get, if I cannot get a ride from my grandmothers. She has a muscle disease causing her, in a matter of time, to lose her license.
This bus issue also takes away my freedom. It is greatly affecting many lives. Those 30 employees may lose thier homes, as well as not being able to provide for their families. This is just a short version of the letter Im sending SETD.
KERA McGEE HOAGLAND