The feasibility of allowing kids in London 12 years and under ride the bus for free will be the talk of Wednesday’s London Transit Commission board meeting.
The plan, which was part of a recently released poverty panel that included some 112 recommendations on combating the issue of poverty, has an estimated cost of $150,000.
The LTC is suggesting the city cover the costs.
“It’s really not within the commission’s purview to deal with social pricing. That’s evidenced by the fact that we have programs in place right now with the City of London to underwrite the discount for the seniors and the provision for people with CNIB passes to ride for free,” General Manager Kelly Paleczny explains.
“From an administrative perspective, what our recommendation would be would be to continue with that model and look for the city to underwrite this program as well.”
Paleczny adds that in addition to the $150,000 in lost revenue annually, if the LTC covers the cost then they would also lose another $50,000 annually in provincial funding.
“We get approximately 40 cents for every ride in gas tax funding each year. And what we’ve estimated again so that loss of ridership would result in approximately $48,000 less in gas tax. So you would add, I mean to round numbers, you’d add another $50,000 to that cos if London Transit were to underwrite the program.”
The LTC board meeting begins at 5 p.m. Wednesday.