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ACE needs may come at expense of bus service
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Bus service could be cutback in Manteca as well as connections to Stockton where a number of local riders use Regional Transit to reach Delta College and various county services.

The vast majority of RT’s ridership is low-income and lack vehicles.

The reason for potential reductions in service is due to a move by the Altamont Corridor Express to take a bigger slice of San Joaquin County transit money to operate commuter trains to the Bay Area. Those trains carry riders who have an economic profile on the upper end for San Joaquin County.

The proposal would cost Regional Transit at least $2 million and Manteca Transit $270,000. Other cities also would receive less transit funding as well.

The decision being hammered out before the San Joaquin Council of Governments has prompted Regional Transit and ACE to take their cases to the various City Councils. Three weeks ago, RT made the pitch to the Manteca council stressing that “all transit” is important including rail.

Tonight ACE will give their pitch when the Manteca City Council meets at 7 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St.

The dilemma is especially dicey for Manteca. The Lathrop-Manteca station is historically either the No. 1 or No. 2 station for ACE boarding. The city is also pushing for ACE service into downtown Manteca when service is eventually extended to Modesto.

Also, the majority of the Livermore Lab RT commute buses board in Manteca while Manteca residents use RT to reach classes at Delta College as well as county services. In addition Manteca  Transit, which also would take a hit, serves a growing number of people who need to get to doctors’ appointments, shop, the senior center, or connect with RT buses in Manteca.