Over the last few weeks, if you drove a gas guzzler and you wanted a slightly less-guzzly car, the federal government hooked you up with $4,500 in credit. The New Mex's editorial page
reported yesterday that, in total, the Cash for Clunkers program inspired 350 new car sales in Santa Fe, the equivalent of as much as $1.57 million in federal stimulus.
Meanwhile, SFR received this press release from the City of Santa Fe regarding public transportation:
SANTA FE, NM-Due to mandates by the City Council during the 2009-2010 budget hearings, service changes to Santa Fe Trails' bus system and also to Santa Fe Ride, the city's para-transit system, will go into effect November 2, 2009....
The changes include ending Santa Fe Trails service at 10 p.m. instead of 11 p.m. on weekdays (Saturday and Sunday times will remain the same); reducing the hours of service for Santa Fe Ride passengers to Monday through Friday 6 a.m. until 10 p.m.; Saturdays 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. until 7 p.m...
Holidays which will necessitate closing both Santa Fe Trails and Santa Fe Ride include Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and Labor Day.
Right. So, 350 drivers in Santa Fe were rewarded for driving fuel-inefficient vehicles with gigantic credits on brand new (arguably still fuel inefficient) cars, while Santa Fe's car-less and environmentally friendly public-transportation consumers get the shaft. That's not to mention club-goers who were taking that 11pm bus home instead of getting behind the wheel. Perhaps the worst bit is that the council has basically decided to house-bound disabled Santa Feans on Saturday and Sunday nights and national holidays to close the budget deficit. Currently Santa Fe Ride runs 24-7, every day of the year.
Enraged? There's a public meeting with the city's Transit Advisory Board on the issue tonight: 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center, 201 W. Marcy, Coronado/DeVargas room.