TBCA member Lois Schklar recently sent Mayor Ford’s office the following letter in response to planned TTC cuts (Toronto Star: Prepare for fare hike, TTC Chair says) for budget year 2012.
I do not support your drastic cuts to the TTC. I rely on public transit to get around the city. I already wait longer than necessary for streetcar service due to cars clogging the downtown streets. I know you are a car guy and probably commuting as you do from the far edge of the downtown area necessitates your driving every day. But many of us do not drive nor do we wish to drive. The congestion is unacceptable. More streetcars and busses are needed not less. What are you thinking?
Only last year you said the TTC was an essential service. Obviously meaningless political dribble.
Check out any European city and their public transit systems. Our system has a very long way to go. You are only contributing to its decline. Make our TTC more efficient not less.
Please reconsider your outrageous actions and help make Toronto the world class city it deserves to be.
Please do not auto respond. That is really annoying.
Here was the response from the Mayor’s office:
Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts about the TTC’s proposed budget for 2012.
The previous administration regularly increased TTC fares. Last year, the TTC was able to provide services with no increase to fares. However, like the rest of the City’s services and departments, the TTC has inflationary pressures which must be addressed. Ten cents represents a 3.3% inflationary increase this year, after no increase last year.
No TTC routes will be eliminated. In most cases, changes will be minimal, measured in seconds, not minutes. We are in fact shifting TTC services and staffing to those routes experiencing growth in ridership from those routes where there is lower usage.
In the fiscal year 2010-2011, the TTC received $91 million from the Province for its operation- roughly 6% of its $1.5 Billion operating budget. We are grateful for the support from the Province. We will continue to work with our partners at the Province and Federal Government to find solutions for funding. However, we recognize those governments also face their own financial challenges.
Thank you again for expressing your comments and concerns. Your valuable input on this important issue is greatly appreciated. Please do not hesitate to contact my office at any time.
Mayor Rob Ford
City of Toronto