[URBAN NOTE] “Is it time to end discounted TTC fares for seniors?”
Since Ben Spurr’s Toronto Star article has come out, John Tory has emerged as opposing the idea. Myself, I think that an rejigging of the subsidy system to account for the incomes of individual users regardless of their age might be the best way to do this.
For nearly half a century, Torontonians have been assured of at least one perk of growing old: getting a discount on the TTC.
But with major changes coming to the transit agency’s fare structure, some at city hall are starting to ask — is it time to do away with seniors fares?
Sparking the conversation is council’s recent approval of the Fair Pass Program, which would provide discounted fares for low-income adults of all ages.
Speaking before the decisive vote on Dec. 14, TTC chair Josh Colle told his colleagues that it’s unlikely the city will be able to pay for the program — which will cost $48 million a year when it’s fully implemented — while also retaining discounts for seniors and other groups.
The approval of the Fair Pass “will trigger another discussion” about whether the existing transit discounts are a good use of public funds, Colle predicted.
“Forever, our concession has only ever been based on age. And while I understand that seniors vote and that seniors are vocal, they’re also some of the wealthiest people in our city,” he said.