We are pleased to announce that the Long Island Unitarian Universalist Fund (LIUUF), a field-of-interest advised fund managed by the Long Island Community Foundation (LICF), has awarded Tri-State a $20,000 grant to continue advocacy for improved bus service in Nassau and Suffolk counties. To highlight the consequences of underfunding Long Island bus services, Tri-State will join forces with Long Island Jobs with Justice, whose Bus Riders’ Union fights to elevate bus riders’ voices.
The root problem facing Nassau and Suffolk Counties’ bus riders is inadequate investment in the Nassau Inter-County Express (NICE) and the Suffolk County Transit (SCT). After its privatization in 2011, NICE–the third largest suburban bus system in the country–saw fare increases and service reductions. Between 2012 to 2013, NICE ridership declined by 4 percent. In Suffolk County, SCT fares increased to support the expansion of Sunday bus service.
For the last four years, support from LIUUF and LICF has enabled TSTC to achieve key victories in fighting for better bus service on Long Island. Prior to TSTC’s efforts, there had not been a sustained, high profile campaign to improve bus service in Nassau or Suffolk Counties. Tri-State’s advocacy helped bring improvements, but challenges remain. Inconsistent funding levels still threaten a comprehensive and affordable bus system for Long Island.
TSTC thanks the Long Island Unitarian Universalist Fund and Long Island Community Foundation for their continued support.