City Council town hall meetings lately have begun with a number of speakers talking about problems with the SCAT paratransit bus service provided by the Greensboro Transit Agency.

The budget presented to the City Council in May included raising fares for both the regular bus service and for SCAT. But one of the few changes made to the budget by the City Council was to remove those fare increases.

Even with no fare increase on the horizon, SCAT riders have continued to come to meetings to complain about buses being late and not getting the riders to their destination on time. One SCAT rider said that her bus arrived to take her home from work early before she got off work and by the time she could leave the SCAT bus had left.

It is that kind of attitude toward riders that are often brought to the City Council’s attention.

So at the City Council work session at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 15 in the Plaza Level Conference Room, the City Council is scheduled to have a report from the Greensboro Department of Transportation about the Greensboro Transit Agency including SCAT service.

The Greensboro Transit system was until April run by the Greensboro Transit Authority.

In April, the City Council abolished the Greensboro Transit Authority, which on paper had the power to set fares, sign contracts and in general run the bus system, and replaced it with the Greensboro Transit Advisory Commission, which is, as the name implies, a commission to provide advice to the City Council on the transit service. The Greensboro Transit Authority largely operated as an advisory commission, but legally the old Greensboro Transit Authority had a lot of clout.

The change didn’t attract much attention, but the result is that the Greensboro City Council has placed all issues regarding both the fixed route bus service and SCAT on its own plate.

City Council work sessions are public meetings but, unlike City Council meetings, the public is rarely allowed to speak.