MPs hit out at Opal fare hike
LUKE FOLEY LEADS CRITICISMS
MT DRUITT commuters will be slugged almost $1000 extra a year after the State Government increases Opal card fares from July 1.
IPART has recommended the government scrap the current eight-trip model in favour of a plan to make commuters pay for their 10 most expensive weekly journeys.
Under the changes, people travelling from Mt Druitt to Blacktown five days a week for work would see the cost of their travel increase by up to 54 per cent, to $41.60 a week.
For those heading to Strathfield the fare would increase by $18.44 a week to $57.
State Opposition Leader Luke Foley urged the government to scrap the changes.
“At a time when we should be getting more people onto public transport the Baird Government is planning to make trains more unaffordable,” Mr Foley said.
“This is bad public policy that will result in more cars on the road as people avoid paying hundreds of dollars more in train fares.”
Londonderry state Labor MP Prue Car said at a time when the cost of living was so high, price rises for travel were unfair.
“Concerns, like housing stress, are at record levels across this region. How is it that someone who is doing the right thing … can be slugged with an increase of almost $1000? It is simply unfair,” she said.
Mt Druitt state Labor MP Edmond Atalla said one of his biggest concerns was for pensioners.
“From July 1 tickets for pensioners will increase from $2.50 to $9. That is massive increase,” he said.
“No commodity ever increases by that percentage but the government sees it fit to hit the most vulnerable in our community and that is not acceptable.”