Increased bus costs put towns on alert

New capital expenses for Ashcroft-Cache Creek-Clinton BC Transit service may double costs for villages.

Cache Creek has written to its BC Transit partners, Ashcroft and Clinton, telling them that it will drop out of the service at the end of 2012 unless more funding partners can be found.

Council made the decision at its May 14 meeting after finding out that replacements for the two buses will double the cost of the service, which is already approximately $15,000 annually. When the service began in 2008, it was to cost each of the three municipalities just under $10,000 per year.

“It’s not slamming the door shut,” said Councillor Wyatt McMurray, “it’s highlighting the need to find other funding partners or getting the government to step up to the plate.”

Ashcroft, as well, has been considering whether the service is worth more money.

Ashcroft Coun. Helen Kormendy told Council at its last meeting that she and Coun. Jackie Tegart would be meeting with Ashcroft stakeholders “to find out what they want, keeping in mind that costs are going up.”

Last week they met with local service providers who told them the bus service was crucial for their clients, but that there was still much confusion about the bus schedule.