Recommendation would see age-based GRT fare discounts shift toward income-based ones
KITCHENER -- Changes could be coming to Grand River Transit fares later this year.
Regional council is expected to approve recommendations by the Planning and Works Committee that would see fare savings shift toward low-income transit users.
The changes would scrap across-the-board senior and student discounts on July 1 in favour of other measures under the region's affordable transit program geared toward total household income.
Jane Chappelle could have just three months before her seniors' discount is gone.
"I will not be very happy," she says.
"I enjoy the discount and I use the bus on a regular basis."
The region says the income threshold will depend on how many people are in each one.
The region figures that people who qualify will end up saving nearly half on their fares as a result of the changes.
"We really want to make transit more accessible with people with low income, regardless of their age, where it was kind of an age-based thing before," explains Regional Coun. Tom Galloway.
The changes are designed to come into effect with an already-approved two per cent fare hike in July.
What exactly the new fares will look like, though, is still up in the air.
"We'll be coming back to council with our recommendations for those increases and which fares would change," Director of Transit Services Peter Zinck explains.
Post-secondary students can also expect some changes to the UPass system.
The region is looking to sign new deals with student associations to raise those pass prices starting in the fall.
More details about the income-based discount are expected next week if regional council approves the motion.