Wynne government’s fare-by-distance costs will hit GTA TTC riders hardest: NDP

During question period Monday, NDP urban transit critic Cheri DiNovo called on Premier Kathleen Wynne to back off a plan to charge all TTC riders a taxi-like per-kilometre rate that would force many GTA riders to pay more.

The Parkdale-High Park MPP demanded Premier Kathleen Wynne instead keep fares simple and affordable for all GTA transit riders, and get on board with the NDP’s plan to restore provincial funding for city transit operations.

“It’s clear that the Wynne government’s fare integration process is not about better transit service,” DiNovo said.  “This is about imposing more costs onto riders, especially TTC riders living in places like Scarborough, North York and Etobicoke.

“Instead of imposing more costs onto riders, will the premier restore provincial funding for municipal transit operations, as the City of Toronto and the NDP have proposed?” DiNovo asked.

The Ontario NDP has pledged to restore the province's traditional 50-50 direct-funding formula for municipal transit operations. That funding was axed by the Conservative government in 1998, and the Liberals have refused to reinstate it.

But now, as part of Metrolinx’s fare integration process, DiNovo said it looks like the Liberal government may be looking for a way to shift more costs onto suburban transit riders.

“Will the premier guarantee to put riders and the public interest first, and restore funding for municipal transit operations, as the NDP has proposed?”