Fare hike likely on Ipswich transport
ELDERLY and disabled people in the Ipswich area could face a hike in their bus fares.Ipswich borough councillors are due to discuss proposals to increase the concessionary elderly and disabled flat fares from 30p to 40p at a meeting tomorrow .
ELDERLY and disabled people in the Ipswich area could face a hike in their bus fares.
Ipswich borough councillors are due to discuss proposals to increase the concessionary elderly and disabled flat fares from 30p to 40p at a meeting tomorrow .
They are also looking at increasing the cost of an Ipswich Borough Council travel card from £1 to £3 a year, and the cost of having a borough council and Suffolk Countywide travel card from £6 to £7 a year.
The changes would take effect from April next year .
Around 13,000 Ipswich Borough Council travel cards have been issued for 2002/03, and a further 3,500 people have opted to have the Suffolk Countywide travel card either in addition to or instead of the IBC card.
The Government has decided that from April 2003, men aged 60 to 64 will be eligible to receive travel concessions.
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But although more Government grant will be available, a report to the executive committee states it is "uncertain at this stage" whether this will fully cover any increased costs. It also points out that it is difficult to assess what effect the change will have on the council's budget.
"In response to the continuing financial difficulties facing the council it is suggested that consideration be given to increasing the existing 30p flat fare, the annual cost of an Ipswich Borough Council travel card and the combined cost of having both Ipswich Borough Council and Suffolk Countywide travel cards," the report states.
It also suggests that a voucher scheme should be introduced for people who are severely mobility impaired, and unable to use normal bus services.
Councillors are being recommended to support the fare and travel card increases, and to consult with bus companies on the plans.