TransLink’s board of directors unanimously approved a 2.3% fare increase in their quarterly public meeting this morning.
The fare increase will come into effect on July 1, 2021, and it comes after the cancellation of a 4.6% fare increase in 2020 due to COVID-19. As well, the approved 2021 increase is almost half the originally planned rate of increase of 4.1% for this year.
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As reported earlier this week based on a TransLink staff report, the 2021 rate changes will lead to increases of 5 cents for one-zone adult fare, 10 cent increase on a two-zone adult fare, and 15 cent increase on a three-zone fare using the Compass Card stored value.
Concession fares (children and seniors) will go up by 5 cents on one-zone and two-zone, and 10 cents on three-zone using stored value on the Compass Card.
On monthly passes, the adult fares will go up by $2.25 for one zone, $3 for two-zone, and $4.05 for three-zone. Concession monthly passes will increase by $1.30.
TransLink is required to cap annual fare increases at reduced rates through 2024 in exchange for receiving $644 million in emergency operating funding from the provincial and federal governments. BC Transit and BC Ferries have a similar fare cap as part of their agreement for emergency operating funding from the senior governments.
The 2021 fare increase beginning on Canada Day is expected to increase fare revenue by $4 million.
The cancelled higher rates for fare increases were intended to help support the cost of transit expansion, while the approved lower fare increase will be used to help maintain service levels during depressed ridership conditions.
During the same meeting today, TransLink’s board of directors also approved a 2.7% increase to 2021 residential property taxes, with an average homeowner paying about $18 more than the previous year. The public transit authority’s total property tax revenue will increase to $435 million.