The Student News Site of University of Arizona

The Daily Wildcat

68° Tucson, AZ

The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Budget cuts to halt SafeRide summer service

    SafeRide cars await duty along East Second Street on the UA campus before their nightly rounds. SafeRide will likely cut its summer services this year due to money issues and the desire to reduce mileage on the cars.
    SafeRide cars await duty along East Second Street on the UA campus before their nightly rounds. SafeRide will likely cut its summer services this year due to money issues and the desire to reduce mileage on the cars.

    Students attending the UA for summer school will not have the option of using SafeRide to get around this summer.

    SafeRide will have to cut its summer services this year because they cannot afford to run the service for the three extra months, said Lauren Smith, operational director.

    Smith said money for summer SafeRide was included in this year’s budget, but the service won’t be able to run if they lose funds, and it is looking like that will be the case.

    Also, SafeRide does not want to put excess mileage on the cars, since they will probably not have money for new cars for a while, said Brian Greenwald, assistant operations director.

    Smith said SafeRide is much slower in the summer. They usually run only two of the nine cars each night. They have an average of only 100 passengers per night, where during the school year they have an average of 600 passengers a night, she said.

    Payroll is the biggest expense, Smith said. They have put a freeze on hiring new staff.

    SafeRide used to have nine cars and a golf cart running each night during the school year, but they had to give up the golf cart.

    “”We have enough (money) to get through the semester, we won’t run out,”” said Smith.

    Smith said she does not know what SafeRides’ budget for next year will be yet, but is expecting it to be cut in half.

    Smith said the only money SafeRide will be able to count on for sure next year is the money that will come from a student fee in tuition, estimated to be about $100,000. Their budget for this year was $205,000.

    SafeRide has one of the largest budgets of any Associated Students of the University of Arizona program right now, but all programs are expecting large cuts, she said.

    Smith said they are planning for a worst-case scenario for next year’s budget. If they are right, they will have to decrease their boundaries and cut grocery store service all together, since the CatTran also goes to the grocery stores. There will also be a new rule that one of the pick-up or drop-off locations must be a location on campus.

    Smith said SafeRide wants to make sure students who are using it for academic purposes, and not just to go from one friend’s house to another.

    “”We just can’t keep up as far as money’s concerned. We want students to know that we’re doing everything we can. The money’s being used as effectively as possible,”” Smith said.

    More to Discover
    Activate Search