In efforts to keep all 10 of its Blue Bus public routes rolling, the Endless Mountains Transportation Authority (EMTA) has opted to modify two routes in exchange of cutting out any one specific route all together.

Due to budget constraints, EMTA will be shutting down some morning and early-afternoon loops of two Bradford County Blue Bus routes, effective Monday, April 19. Routes affected are Route 20 (Canton/Troy/Towanda) and Route 25 (Wyalusing/Wysox/Towanda).

"These loops were selected based on low rider productivity during those times that have been cut from the schedule," said EMTA General Manager Karen Graber. "The only option besides making modifications to those routes was actually pulling an entire run - and we really didn't want to do that."

Graber said the rising costs of health care, fuel and maintenance coupled with the limited funding - which has not seen an increase in two years; and, does not expect an increase next year - are the primary reasons for the cuts, Graber added, noting that EMTA will re-visit the needs of adding those loops back upon future budget reviews and public demands.

The schedules for the Blue Bus Route 25 and Route 20 will now run as follows:

Route 20 (Canton/Troy/Towanda)

Morning loop: Beginning at the EMTA terminal at the Progress Building (Towanda) at 5:40 a.m. to Canton. From Canton (first stop, BiLo market) beginning at 7:15 a.m. to Towanda (8:43 a.m.) and then to the Guthrie Clinic in Sayre at 9:40 a.m.

Afternoon loop: Beginning at the Guthrie Clinic, Sayre (1:50 p.m.) to the Dollar Store (1:55 p.m.) to Northern Tier Counseling (Loder Street, South Waverly at 2:05 p.m.) to Towanda. Then from Towanda (Progress Building) at 2:55 p.m. to Canton. From Canton (first stop, BiLo market) beginning at 4:30 p.m. to Towanda (5:45 p.m.)

Route 25 (Wyalusing/Wysox/Towanda)

Morning loop: Beginning at Park Place Manor in Wyalusing (7:15 a.m.) the Blue Bus will follow regular published routes to Creekside Market, Camptown (7:44 a.m.) to Towanda (Progress Building) arriving at 9 a.m.

Afternoon loop: Beginning at EMTA terminal Progress Building (2:15 p.m.) the route will follow normal scheduled stops (SERVE, Monroeton, 2:25 p.m.; Progress Building, 2:35 p.m.; Northern Tier Counseling, Main Street, 2:40 p.m.; Bradford Towne Center, 2:45 p.m. and to Wysox General Store, 2:50 p.m.). The Blue Bus will then continue to the Wyalusing area to the Creekside Market, Camptown, 3:07 p.m.; Camptown Elementary, 3:09 p.m.; Dandy Mini Mart, 3:20 p.m.; Smith's Personal Care Home, 3:26 p.m. and Park Place Manor, 3:33 p.m.

The Blue Bus meets public transportation needs in Bradford, Sullivan and Tioga counties. Anyone can ride the Blue Bus; no reservations are needed. For additional information or schedules, contact EMTA at 1-800-242-3484.

This press release was submitted by the Endless Mountains Transportation Authority.