“content that the consultation process has now been as comprehensive as possible”

After the earlier kerfuffle about the introduction of higher Translink fares, confirmation today that bus and rail fares in Northern Ireland are to “increase by up to 3%”. But are the increases really that different to those initially reported? Northern Ireland Regional Development Minister, Sinn Féin’s Conor Murphy,

“Over recent weeks the Consumer Council and Translink have met,” [Conor Murphy] said. “I am informed that these discussions have been productive and that as a result, a number of changes to specific fares have been agreed. “I am aware that agreement has not been reached on every specific fare increase proposed, but at this stage I am content that the consultation process has now been as comprehensive as possible.”

Today’s reported fare increases

Metro fares up by 10p
Ulsterbus fares up by 10p
Rail fares up by 10p
No increase in Metro Smartlink
No increase Ulsterbus multi-journey
Cross border coach fares up 13%
Enterprise service up 10%

And the initially reported fare increases.

The government-owned company announced in newspaper advertisements that Enterprise cross-border rail tickets will cost 10% more, while coach journeys are set to go up by 13%.

It said NI Railways fares will also be increased by an average of 3%, while Ulsterbus and Goldline fares will go up by 2%.

Metro cash fares are to go up by 10p per journey, but Metro Smartlink multi-journeys are to remain the same, the transport firm said.

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  • 6countyprod

    The more people use the bus and rail systems in the province, the cheaper the fares will be. Edinburgh has a fantastic bus system that is very successful, precisely because a good percentage of the population use it.

    If we are serious about cutting pollutants from the air that we breathe, then we should put our money where our mouth is.

  • fin

    6countyprod, logical idea, but wrong

    http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/firstgroup/Bus-travellers-fury-over-fares.2816363.jp

    once public transport is privatised the price just goes north, either its needed for investment to accommadate increased passenger numbers, or its increased to compensate for decreased passenger numbers.

  • Pigeon Toes

    “content that the consultation process has now been as comprehensive as possible”
    http://www.drdni.gov.uk/consultationZone.htm

    Ah would that be like all the other public consultations listed ?

  • Dec

    Fin

    How would the introduction of competition affect that model?

  • Pigeon toes

    And wouldn’t ye know that the Consumer would not appear to be as happy as Spud would have us believe?
    http://www.4ni.co.uk/northern_ireland_news.asp?id=93481

  • PT, I followed the link to the Consultation Zone

    This page contains a list of all current Consultations within the department. To obtain a list of archived consultations, please select the link below.

    It’s running on empty.

  • Pigeon Toes

    Nevin,

    Ah it must be the secret “public consultation” zone!

    They appear to be quite keen on them, like secret meetings with non-existent audit trails.

    They must have also had secret press release regarding the EU Investigation into their procurement practices…..

  • Comrade Stalin

    I remember several Translink price rises over the past couple of years on account of the rise in the cost of fuel.

    The cost of fuel has now dropped; Translink’s passenger count continues to rise presumably leading to an increase in revenue. Something is fundamentally, fundamentally broken when any business cannot control other operating costs in the face of rising revenue, cheaper fuel, and low inflation. The Regional Development Committee should be investigating this to find out what is wrong.

    But no, dear old Conor has bent over and puckered up to his civil servants, as usual.

  • Pigeon Toes

    Comrade Stalin,

    The DRD committee would appear not to function as we would imagine, i.e in a “oversight and scrutiny” role regarding the work of the Department.

    Back in December the committee issued a press release, regarding concerns surrounding procurement.
    “The Committee has decided to schedule time in its work programme in early 2009 to more carefully consider the report findings”
    http://www.niassembly.gov.uk/regional/2007mandate/press/RD0608.htm

    I can’t see this anywhere in their “work” programme,but then again their interpretation of
    “early 2009” is perhaps different from mine (and I suspect a few others).

    Their failure in not examining this issue will hopefully come back to bite them all , as the matter is now the subject of an EU Commission Investigation!

    But shhh, it’s apparently a secret