Officials setting up task force to combat commuting costs

QUEENSBURY Warren County leaders took action Friday toward seeking solutions to the spiraling costs of commuting for upcounty residents. County Supervisors voiced support for establishing a task force to study mass transit services for residents of outlying areas of the county. County Board of Supervisors Chairman Fred Monroe said hed be recruiting task force members from the board as well as the Adirondack-Glens Falls Transportation Authority and Greater Glens Falls Transit, plus a civil service union representative, and members of the business community. Many residents of our county are facing soaring commuting costs, and we have to work on solutions, he said. We have to do what we can to get residents to work at a lower cost. Whether it would be establishing a daily bus shuttle service, encouraging carpooling or campaigning with businesses to convert to four-day workweeks, something has to be done to relieve the growing financial burden of commuting, he said. Weve got to brainstorm all sorts of ideas, he said. Johnsburg Supervisor Sterling Goodspeed will be named initial chairman of the task force, Monroe said. Goodspeed said he was ready to get started. Im glad to work on this, he said. Im very concerned about the ability of my towns residents to get food, to get to work and medical appointments, particularly this upcoming winter, he said. The ability to drive at an affordable cost to Queensbury or Glens Falls for food and other necessities was vital for upcounty residents to avoid financial crises, he said. A cartful of groceries that cost $100 in Glens Falls would cost $175 in North Creek, he said. Greater Glens Falls Transit Director Scott Sopczyk has warned that bus service cant be established without scrutinizing potential ridership and lining up funding. But Monroe said finding solutions for affordable commuting was urgent, citing soaring heating-oil prices that were likely to devastate families finances beginning in late fall. This situation is likely to become a disaster this winter, he said.

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