As expected, ridership continues to be down on the Gold Country Stage since the COVID pandemic has reduced the need for services because of stay at home orders and the limited availability of business. Nevada County Transit Services Manager Robin Van Valkenburgh says that its a combination of issues and the overall concern of the virus spreading has contributed to the decline.
Van Valkengurgh says fortunately, many government requirements about number of riders and fare revenue are being put aside for now, which helps financially.
What is more concerning is the lack of money being spent in the community during the pandemic. A majority of bus service operations is funded through sales tax and gasoline taxes.
Gold Country Stage has also received some COVID funding from the federal governement, as well as through the state, and Nevada County.
Transit services is also part of an additional 800 thousand dollar grant application that is in the funding evaluation process.
Van Valkenburgh says no additional cuts to hours or routes is planned at this point, but what really needs to happen is for the economy to reopen so tax revenue can begin to flow.