Saint Lucia Seeking Scientific Method Of Determining Public Transportation Rates

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Amid a persistent clamour by minibus drivers for an increase in fares, Transport Minister Stephenson King has announced plans for a study to determine a scientific formula for such decision-making.

“We understand what the bus drivers are engaged in, but as we speak the Ministry of Transport – the Department of Transport is undertaking a study that will inform us on a scientific method of computing public transportation rates,” the former Prime Minister told reporters.

“So we want to do it in a very scientific way so it’s not an arbitrary thing. It is not one based on emotions or one based on rising prices and after you hear nothing. So we want it scientifically that all will benefit,” King explained.

According to the Minister, a meeting with the National Council on Public Transportation (NCOPT) President on Friday pointed to an increase in fuel.

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Effective Monday, gasoline and diesel prices increased by $1.00 from $13.95 to $14.95 per gallon, while LPG 100 lb. cylinders increased from $257.95 to $266.43

“We need to sit down and work out some mechanism that will allow them to operate at an economic rate and that the people of the country will not be affected,” Minister King stated regarding bus operators.

Bus drivers have complained that the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted their operations, making it difficult for them to meet their financial obligations when they have not had a fare increase for over a decade, while prices everywhere are going up.

The Transport Minister told reporters that the drivers called for a fare hike long before COVID-19.

However he explained that, unfortunately, the situation in the country is such that the people cannot be put under any more pressure.

“We have to be reasonable both to the bus drivers and to the passengers, “King said.

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Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
Our Editorial Staff at St. Lucia Times is a team publishing news and other articles to over 200,000 regular monthly readers in Saint Lucia and in over 150 other countries worldwide.

17 COMMENTS

  1. The plan King has will not work, there are rates in place that the public is comfortable with, however, the fuel costs is the problem, if fuel costs could be lowered it would ease the financial burden on the bus drivers, and the government would find means of taxation that would not affect food prices so the cost of living would remain reasonable, food for thought.

  2. let me ask you all something, did the gas price increased only for bus drivers? NO, so why its only about them f—king greedy bus drivers, they want government to give them money, they want government to increase bus fare, so just now they will want government to buy them buses too, so whats about us, the people that’s using their vehicle every day to work and back, don’t they use gas too, and what increase they are getting? for so long government don’t increase civil servants salary, bus drivers you all working for your’ll selves its your’ll bus you running your own business, infact all your’ll suppose to take a day in each mounth for passenger’s day and give them a free ride, because if all companies and government provides buses for their staff you all stick in that,, everyone with vehicle spending on parts and fuel, not bus drivers and owners alone,,, ok,, so put your’ll greedyness on a side,, if you cannot mentain your vehicle sell it and go to another business.

  3. A Minister of Communication who doesn’t know the difference between a RADIO STATION and STREAMING LIVE wants a SCIENTIFIC way of calculating bus fare? What a laugh.

  4. Public transportation is a government function performed and provided by private investors. It seems soon public transportation will only be affordable to a few. Bus drivers should be allowed to carry a full load. Hope scientific method comes up with a unit price per mile.

  5. Saint Lucians are certainly jot ready for a scientific approach in determining bus fares! Trust me on that! Forget about that– a better approach is to revamp the sector and go cashless—you can easily monitor bus operator revenue, you can tax their A*#es just like you tax me, you can special reduced rate for elderly, retirees and poor. This can also reduce bus related robberies, make it quicker to pay fares with monthly passes,—-I can go on and on but a scientific approach is not the best idea- scrap it!

    • Wouldn’t it be fantastic if every working person paid their fair share of taxes. Those same people not paying taxes are the same ones always asking for handouts financed by tax payers who get nothing.

      • John doe- you are right! I just cant believe they want to abuse science and apply it to only the “fare” and not for other aspects.

  6. When employing a scientific approach please start from unskilled labour and an 8 hour work day. As it stands most of those work 2 hours a day and expect to live the life of someone working 12.

  7. I agree 100smph. That is the best solution to relieve the less fortunate and senior citizens of this country.

  8. Stephenson King keeps talking about the situation but almost never delivers.
    Take for example when he held the position of labour in
    the previous administration. He mentioned security officers having to paid higher salary and trained as police officers– this never happened. Many people still have cases pending at the labour department by former employees due to unpaid severance. Drivers was scheduled to start using the payless system last year Nov or Dec.– never happened. So long you are in talks with bus drivers, — and he is still appearing in the media talking emptiness. I can go on and on about things he promised to become fruitful since in Chastanet administration but have not. King tries to talk tough but he is useless. I’m not sure why PJP gave him a ministry position.

  9. Screen the bus drivers secretly, determine who the best drivers are, dismiss all those that fail while offering a bus buy back program for those who choose to participate. Then implement a public transport system, a bus pass valid for a time period, in vitr the underperforming drivers to apply for other positions, maintenance etc. Invest in buses that are better suited for public transport. Tell those who don’t want to go with this idea to f off and find something else to do.

  10. Since 50 years or so ago – the St Lucia government should have implemented a PROPER NATIONAL BUS SERVICE. Now the s**t has hit the fan, in that the St Lucia bus system is a private affair, but bus drivers need, want and must have government intervention. What a shambles!!

  11. Those new UWP Rodney bay walkways should become scooter paths, people gonna start boycotting buses and opt for small motorscooters,smph or bike transport rental station like in Thailand, double cab open 4×4 ting come on creative Lucian’s,…create a next means of cheaper transportation also for the people who really need it the elderly, new born moms, handicapped…….no income people……

Comments are closed.

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