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New Hanover County budget puts WAVE routes at risk

WILMINGTON, NC — The New Hanover County Historic Courthouse was standing-room-only during the New Hanover County Commissioners meeting Monday night.

Representatives from groups requesting alterations in the 2013- 2014 fiscal year’s proposed budget filled the room, attempting convince the Board to make room in the county’s budget for their cause.

One of the organizations that had multiple representatives speak on its behalf was WAVE.

WAVE is looking to receive $110,000 less in county funding than it received last year. Leaders of WAVE say the cut is far more than that, as they will lose state and federal leveraging which they estimate will total close to a $1,000,000.

They say one dollar of county funding yields one dollar in state funding and two dollars in federal funding for operations. One dollar of county funding yields one dollar in state funding and eight in federal for capital acquisitions.

The recommended decrease in funding will force WAVE to eliminate some routes if the budget is passed.

“There’s a reduction in service of two routes, permanently. It would be the route to Carolina Beach. It’s brand new, its building but it isn’t to the numbers yet, so that one is going to be the first to go. The other one is the northern route because it doesn’t get that many people, but the stops it stops at are crucial,” Captain Dave Scheu, Chairman of the Cape Fear Transportation Authority said.

Scheu says it’s hard to believe the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners does not understand the need for public transportation.

The Commissioners will have a workshop session June 13th and adopt the budget June 17th.

More: continued here

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