Victoria seniors can rest easy for the next three years knowing that monthly transit pass prices are not increasing.

Victoria seniors can rest easy for the next three years knowing that monthly transit pass prices are not increasing.

Seniors won’t see increase in transit pass costs

Victoria’s seniors can rest easy for at least the next three years knowing that monthly transit passes aren’t going up in price.

  • Dec. 16, 2015 12:00 p.m.

Kevin Underhill

Victoria’s seniors can rest easy for at least the next three years knowing that monthly transit passes aren’t going up in price.

Every three years, the Victoria Regional Transit Commission performs a fare review. One option presented this year would have seen the increase in price of monthly seniors passes. Seniors advocate Isobel Mackenzie said that she was happy to see that option struck down.

“I was very pleased especially because there were seniors there, presenting to the commission,” Mackenzie said. “I think the commission saw that and made the right decision.”

Commission chair Susan Brice said they are always trying to find the sweet spot where they can charge enough to bring in revenue but still encourage people to ride.

“This year, we had three options to help us achieve our objectives,” Brice said. “And we ended up actually choosing a fourth option to go with.”

The changes, set to take place in April, include the elimination of bus transfers and multi-month youth passes but will see no increase in fares.

Mackenzie, who was on-hand at the meeting last week, said although this was a good first step, she is still concerned about the cost of transit specifically for low-income seniors.

Right now, the yearly cost for seniors to access transit is $540. Seniors with an income of $17,280 only have to pay $45 per year for bus access.

The discrepancy in income is one angle Mackenzie hopes the commission will look at for the future.

“Not all seniors have the same income. You could be making just over $17,280 and pay full senior fares,” she said. “What I have asked for is that they consider a graduated approach where you pay based on your income.”

Brice said this proposal would be something to consider for the next fare review in three years but noted that new programs like this often take an administrative toll. She also said that seniors make up only one group and that the commission has to look at their total ridership when making fare reforms.

One major change that will be initiated in April is the scrapping of bus transfers. This, according to Brice, will cut down on rider-driver confrontation.

“We’ve been hearing a strong message from our drivers that they want to see transfers eliminated,” she said. “Instead, you can buy a day pass for $5 which will be good for unlimited rides throughout the day.”

Mackenzie hopes that the transit commission reevaluates her proposed plan of a graduated fare increase and plans on working closely to see it implemented.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Royal Roads University president Philip Steenkamp said they are aware of hateful graffiti spray-painted in an area of the forest surrounding the campus. The graffiti in question includes anti-Semitic content and a racial slur towards Black people. (Facebook/Royal Roads University)
Anti-Semitic, hateful graffiti spotted in forest near Royal Roads University

Royal Roads working with West Shore RCMP to remove graffiti “as soon as possible”

A cougar was spotted at Royal Roads University on Sunday, Jan. 24. The sighting was reported on the western edge of the campus. (File photo)
Cougar spotted at Royal Roads University Sunday afternoon

Animal reported on western side of campus near Colwood Fire Department

Saanich-based St. Luke’s Players community theatre company has been making the most of their opportunities to keep busy during the pandemic, including staging a Christmastime panto of Alice in Wonderland on Zoom. (Courtesy St. Luke’s Players)
Saanich’s St. Luke’s Players: Bringing the stage to the people

Community theatre company holding online auditions Jan. 23-24 for March production

Frank Bourree was awarded the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce’s first Governors’ Award of Distinction for his leadership in the business community. (Courtesy of Frank Bourree)
Frank Bourree receives award of distinction from Victoria chamber

Award recognizes positive role model in business community

The Habitat for Humanity Meaning of Home contest is open to students in Grades 5 to 6. (Screenshot/Habitat for Humanity video)
Habitat for Humanity launches national writing contest

Entries accepted from students in Grades 4 to 6 until Feb. 19

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

A woman injects herself with crack cocaine at a supervised consumption site Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Drug users at greater risk of dying as services scale back in second wave of COVID-19

It pins the blame largely on a lack of supports, a corrupted drug supply

Wet’suwet’en supporters and Coastal GasLink opponents continue to protest outside the B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Thursday, February 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
‘We’re still in it’: Wet’suwet’en push forward on rights recognition

The 670-km Coastal GasLink pipeline was approved by B.C. and 20 elected First Nations councils on its path

The sky above Mt. Benson in Nanaimo is illuminated by flares as search and rescuers help an injured hiker down the mountain to a waiting ambulance. (Photo courtesy Nanaimo Search and Rescue)
Search plane lights up Nanaimo mountain with flares during icy rope rescue

Rescuers got injured hiker down Mt. Benson to a waiting ambulance Saturday night

Jennifer Cochrane, a Public Health Nurse with Prairie Mountain Health in Virden, administers the COVID-19 vaccine to Robert Farquhar with Westman Regional Laboratory, during the first day of immunizations at the Brandon COVID-19 vaccination supersite in Brandon, Man., on Monday, January 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tim Smith - POOL
Top doctor urges Canadians to keep up with COVID measures, even as vaccines roll out

More than 776,606 vaccines have been administered so far

From the left: Midway RCMP Csts. Jonathan Stermscheg and Chris Hansen, Public Servant Leanne Mclaren and Cpl. Phil Peters. Pictured in the front are Mclaren’s dog, Lincoln and Peters’ dog, Angel. Photo courtesy of BC RCMP
B.C. Mounties commended for bringing firewood to elderly woman

Cpl. Phil Peters said he and detachment members acted after the woman’s husband went to hospital

Dr. Jerome Leis and Dr. Lynfa Stroud are pictured at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto on Thursday, January 21, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
‘It wasn’t called COVID at the time:’ One year since Canada’s first COVID-19 case

The 56-year-old man was admitted to Toronto’s Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

An Uber driver’s vehicle is seen after the company launched service, in Vancouver, Friday, Jan. 24, 2020. Several taxi companies have lost a court bid to run Uber and Lyft off the road in British Columbia. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Taxi companies lose court bid to quash Uber, Lyft approvals in British Columbia

Uber said in a statement that the ruling of the justice is clear and speaks for itself

Nanaimo Regional General Hospital. (News Bulletin file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak declared at Nanaimo hospital

Two staff members and one patient have tested positive, all on the same floor

Most Read