Dallat: Translink fare increases totally unjustified
“It appears that Translink has embarked on a campaign to cause the maximum irritation with those that they should be consulting with. The Assembly’s Regional Development Committee which has a statutory responsibility to scrutinise those companies under the control of the Department of Regional Development was not informed of the increases and given no opportunity to have any input in the alterations to the fare structure of buses and trains. The Consumer Council, which also has a statutory responsibility to represent the public on issues relating to public transport was also left in the dark.
“All this comes against a background of falling fuel prices which obviously do not reflect in the fare increases now imposed by Translink on the hard-pressed commuters, many of whom who haven’t seen a pay increase for years.
“These fare increases will have a profound impact on people living in the rural areas and using public transport to travel to Belfast to work. Some must be wondering if it is worth the effort given the ever-increasing lump of their wages going into travel.
“In recent years Translink obtained millions of pounds of public money to purchase new energy-efficient buses and trains but again this is not reflected in these fare increases.
“To add insult to injury Translink has made little effort to inform the public on how they can save money by purchasing multiple journey tickets.
“My greatest fear is that this is not the last traunch of fare increases to be imposed by Translink who are on a collision course with the DRD Committee and indeed, the travelling public.”