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Fares on the up and up
By Dave Yasvinski
Starting April 1 it will be even more expensive to hop on the bus.
The London Transit Commission announced this week it will adjust the $2 adult cash fare to $2.25 but keep the monthly citipass price at $65. They will also introduce a new monthly weekday-only pass for $56 for Monday to Friday commuters.
Larry Ducharme, LTC general manager, said the increase is the product of a number of realities including increasing costs, growth and service and less public funding. He said there has not been a significant adjustment in three years and they have tried to balance the increase with options such as the weekday-only pass.
"We're trying to curtail our fares to our market to make sure the market is paying a fair share given our financial realities," he said.
"We happen to be a service where the customer pays a large part of the cost of operation but our fares are still a deal."
Kelly Barrowcliffe, president of the Society of Graduate Students, said this move is bad news for graduate students. "Any increase is not good when you are talking about a population that is tapped out already."
Barrowcliffe said they are still consulting with the LTC over the possibility of a universal bus pass for graduate students like the one undergraduates have, but it might not be in place before September 2000.
"For those who do rely on the LTC to get around, this is just another barrier. It's money that we can't afford."
Ian Armour, president of the University Students' Council, said he believed the increase was to make up for money the LTC has not been able to get from the city and was unrelated to LTC's deal with the USC. "In my opinion the fare increase is coming from their financial situation last year I don't think it's related to the bus pass."
For Jemsheed Dean, a fourth-year economics and computer sciences student at Western, the $0.25 fare increase may be better justified if bus services are increased. "It doesn't seem like they've done that on popular routes it's more or less just greed," he said.