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Kingston Transit to offer post-secondary pass for students

Last Updated on August 25, 2020 by YGK News Staff

The City of Kingston has passed a motion that would allow students from Queen’s University and St. Lawrence to opt into a transit pass. In the proposed plan, students would be able to purchase a term pass for $119 for a four-month term, which is the equivalent to a 4-month youth pass.

“The approach of providing students with the option to purchase a 4-month term pass is expected to be temporary until such time that student activity returns to normal.” the report says.

Typically, the City receives 2 millions dollars from its contract with the Alma Mater Society (AMS) and 1 million dollars from its contract with the St. Lawrence Student Association. The city is expecting 25% percent of the regular student population to be present in September.

In the City Council meeting, Councillor Stroud raised some concerns about how the two parties will return to the previous agreement. “This opt-in model is going to have a drastic impact on the access to public transit; I imaging it could be difficult to go back” In response, Mayor Patterson noted Kingston Transit’s intent to return to the same model in the 2021-2022 academic year.

The fee would effectively triple the transit fee for Queen’s students, who currently pay $98 from September to August. Students will expect to pay about $357 for an equivalent pass. St. Lawrence Students currently pay $168 via their student fees.

The council also approved a reimbursement of student fees from the 2019-2020 school year. A reimbursement to the Alma Mater Society of Queen’s University (AMS) will be given in the amount of $495,286.98 and $355,893.12 2 will be reimbursed to the St. Lawrence College Student Association (SA).

“Instead of providing a reimbursement based on 5 calendar months (42%), the reimbursement is adjusted to reflect historical ridership over the September – August period.” The report from Kingston Transit states.

“The approach to reimbursement recognizes that student transit ridership is greatest between the September to April period when a majority of students are on campus and classes are in session. The reimbursement calculation reflects this historical pattern of transit utilization.”

In order to reduce foot-traffic, Kingston Transit expects to have the pass available for purchase online.

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