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Residents weigh in on possible changes to Red Rabbit
Hearings on bus service sparsely attended
Emory Turner, a self-proclaimed advocate for low-income Hall County residents, discusses concerns Wednesday during a Hall Area Transit public forum at Gainesville State College on a proposed Red Rabbit fare increase. - photo by SARA GUEVARA
With questions swirling about potential changes — including fare increases — for the Red Rabbit bus service, Hall County residents got the chance Tuesday to look at proposals and ask questions.Hall Area Transit, the division of the Gainesville-Hall County Community Service Center that oversees the Red Rabbit fixed-route bus service, held two public hearings on possible changes. Those changes included raising fares, implementing transfer fees and eliminating one of the six routes.All told, about 15 residents, not including government employees, attended the two meetings held at Gainesville State College and the Georgia Mountains Center. The small group who showed was largely in support of Red Rabbit and hesitant of proposals to raise fares or reduce routes.It also had some angry words for elected officials looking to make changes on a system that group members say is a vital service for many poor, disabled and otherwise fragile members of the community.Doreen Thomas, a Gainesville resident and retired teacher, was particularly concerned about the proposal to cut a route that she takes to get to doctor’s appointments.