4th March 2002

Independent Candidate In The Forthcoming General Election Cllr Tom Crosby is calling on the Government to introduce a taxi/hackney voucher system to old age pensioners and all who are in receipt of the free travel pass, as a recent report has confirmed that in counties such as Longford and Roscommon the survey showed that over 40% of rural dwellers live in locations without any kind of scheduled public transport service not even a weekly service.

The Cllr states that there is presently a serious imbalance with recipients of the free travel pass in rural Ireland as against their counterparts living in the urban areas such as Dublin where the free travel pass holders get an average value in excess of €20 per week from the constant bus, train and dart services available to them on a frequent basis, all of which are also substantially subsidised by the tax payers of Ireland.

Cllr Crosby proposes that the voucher system would be valued on introduction of say €20 per week which would allow a weekly visit for a recipient such as an old age pensioner to go to the doctor or medical centre or just do the weekly shopping by taxi/hackney car.

The Cllr is also calling on the Minister for Public Enterprise Mary O’Rourke to have Counties Longford Roscommon included in the do-it-yourself Public Transport Pilot Scheme recently announced for Counties Galway, Mayo, Limerick, Sligo, Donegal, Leitrim, Offaly, Clare and Tipperary.

The scheme which will be funded by the Government involves communities groups buying their own buses or developing whatever public transport best suits their needs in their communities.

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