Last week we gave an oral submission, supporting an earlier written submission requesting the Greater Wellington Regional Council include a 25% tertiary discount on public transport be added to the 2016/17 annual plan.
Additionally, Byron Oosthuizen submitted a petition with 3,587 signatures supporting student tertiary fares..
The Council initially indicated they supported at 25% tertiary student discount policy on public transport on the provision that Wellington City Council and other tertiary institutes also contributed financially (they voted for this in 2014).
However, councillors voted down on an amendment proposed by Councillor Sue Kedgley to add the tertiary discount to this year’s Annual Plan.
The Council’s proposition
Councillors Sue Kedgley, Paul Bruce, Nigel Wilson and Sandra Greig all voted in favour of including tertiary discounts on public transport be added to this year’s annual plan.
Ms Kedgley stated students contribute more than $2 billion to the Wellington economy – all true.
Additionally, she noted her concern some students pay more for their bus fares than for food. She mentioned this causes real stress – true again.
What happens next?
Not including reduced bus fares in the annual plan is a short-sighted approach. Integrating student-friendly policies, such as reduced public transport would position Wellington as a more attractive destination for students.
Local body elections are coming in September. VUWSA will be calling on candidates to prioritise a student-friendly Wellington.
We'll also be calling out for your support to help us push for a student-friendly Wellington.