CORBIN — The wheels are coming to a stop for the Corbin Trolley.
According to a press release from city officials, both the budget committee (Trent Knuckles and Andrew Pennington) and City Manager Marlon Sams have been diligently working to produce a balanced and fair budget that ensures the ability to offer quality public services to the citizens of Corbin.
As of Friday, June 2, the city of Corbin will be suspending trolley services. It is at the recommendation of Sams that the daily operation of the trolley cease in order to better align the budget of the city of Corbin to meet the immediate needs of its citizens.
According to the press release, the decision was not made lightly. The release reads: “During the budgeting process every program is scrutinized and analyzed for its effectiveness and ability to serve the greater goals of our town. The trolley, though a great service, does not currently align with the economic goals of our city. After studying historic ridership and making projections of future customers, the trolley appeared to be an expense the city could not continue to incur.”
“Everybody agrees that it’s a good thing to have,” Downtown Manager Andy Salmons said. “We got it so cheaply and it is beautiful. It has value, the value is just going to find another form.”
“Personally I would have liked to have seen the trolley program go a little longer to really gage ridership and to do a little more to let the public know what it is and how it can be utilized,” Salmons added. “I think it could have gotten more of a chance to show viability, but ultimately I do understand the position of the budget committee and the city manager.”
Sams said the employees who drive for the trolley would be relocated to other jobs within the city.
“We’re not going to get rid of those two,” Sams noted. “Both of them are CDL drivers and we may even put them into the Public Works Department. I’ve got something else for both of them.”
Sams said down the road he hopes Corbin could have a transit system, but running the trolley on a day-to-day basis isn’t generating revenue. Sams said the city isn’t going to sell the trolley and they will be using it for special occasions.
“We will use it for arena events, tourism, parades and anything that we see that will benefit the city,” Sams added.
The trolley will be housed in a building on Depot Street when not in use.