South Charlotte

Express bus service might be reduced

Union County Manager Cynthia Coto is recommending the county continue to help pay for express bus service into Union County, though at a reduced schedule.

At a recent Union County Commissioners meeting, commissioners asked Coto to look into other ways to pay for the Charlotte Area Transit System bus service from Monroe to uptown Charlotte. They suggested options such as requesting higher bus fares for Union County. The county is facing budget cuts, and commissioners have said they cannot provide full funding for the service this year.

After working through the budget, Coto is recommending the county spend $86,000 - about $40,000 less than the usual $125,000 - for CATS service. CATS matches county funding for the service.

That means the buses will travel the route three times in the morning and afternoon rather than four, Coto said Tuesday.

The $86,000 would come from the county's general fund, Coto said. She is not recommending additional fees or higher bus fares to pay for CATS.

A public hearing on the budget will be held at 7 p.m. on June 6 at the Union County Government Center, 500 N. Main St., Monroe. The commissioners should vote on a final budget later that month.