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O.C. transit agency finalizes another round of deep cuts in service

November 23, 2009 | 12:02 pm

Orange County transit officials today announced another round of major cuts to bus service — including the elimination of several routes — to offset a projected budget shortfall of more than $330 million over the next five years.

The latest cuts, which take effect in March, will eliminate 150,000 bus-service hours. Since September 2008, the Orange County Transportation Authority has reduced bus service by 20% — a total of 383,000 annual bus-service hours — because of the budget shortfall.

Beyond eliminating routes, the cuts will result in shortened routes, fewer stops, longer waits between buses and the elimination of the agency’s popular Night Owl service. In January, the agency raised fares to $1.50 from $1.25 for a single ride.

The eliminated routes are: 62, which runs from Huntington Beach to Santa Ana; 74, Fountain Valley to Irvine; 75, Tustin to Newport Beach; 131, Yorba Linda to Orange; 147, Brea to Santa Ana; and 164, Seal Beach to Westminster.

A complete list of cuts can be found on the agency’s website at www.octa.net/marchchange.

-- Paloma Esquivel in Orange County