REPORTING · 25th October 2013
The Airport Shuttle and Taxi Service subsidy came up at the Committee of the Whole Meeting on Tuesday, October 15th. Councillor Corinne Scott made a motion to provide the service until November the 1st, 2014. They will look at it again at that time.
“The Airport Transportation Subsidy Program has been well used within our community and originally, we had budgeted $31,500 in the 2013 budget. At the end of September, 2013, only $4,400 had been used which, I was pleased because we had extra money in our budget, but, it’s not that we didn’t have a good number of people making use of the subsidy program because we had 32 trips with two passengers and 50 trips with one passenger. I feel the service is exactly what Council was trying to accomplish by helping those people who require the minibus or taxi service because we don’t have the bus service going to the airport anymore,” said Scott.
Councillor Rob Goffinet cautioned as to whether or not it is being used. 84 people used the service making about 10 people per month. He wanted it to be used even more. He wanted to know if the advertising is getting out in the community.
Mayor Joanne Monaghan attributed it to the mild winter. People were driving themselves. Scott stated 82 trips was what they needed, as they wanted to have a bus service at first. This shows they do not have the passengers to subsidize a bus service. This also cost less to the community.
Councillor Mario Feldhoff added the other options were at $150,000 a year. He suggested advertising it and was pleased his phone was not ringing off the hook because of the problems with the existing program.
“I think we’ve got a good solution here and I think we should continue to fund it and monitor it as indicated in the motion,” said Feldhoff.
Councillor Phil Germuth wanted to know how many used the taxi and how many used the minibus. Deputy CAO Warren Waycheshen stated there were times when the minibus was transporting people to Terrace anyway and the District was never invoiced for the numbers. They have told the District, if they can make it work when they are going, this is what they are doing.
Councillor Edwin Empinado told the Council he has seen busses going to the airport. He suggested Administration find new avenues to partner with industries which are flying their workers out. Waycheshen told him the opportunity was not available at this time because they have not gotten the plan working yet, but they will continue to work on it.
The motion was called and carried.