WINNIPEG – A motion to be considered at this morning’s Executive Policy Committee will recommend that Council freeze 2019 transit fares at 2018 levels Mayor Brian Bowman announced today.

Under the Fees and Charges By-law, Council has authorized the Chief Financial Officer to increase annually any fee imposed by the City of Winnipeg by an amount equal to or less than the rate of inflation unless a Council resolution specifically states otherwise.

Pursuant to the authority granted under this bylaw, Winnipeg Transit fares have customarily increased by at least 5 cents effective January 1 of each calendar year to cover inflationary cost increases incurred by Winnipeg Transit.

The motion will recommend that Council direct the Chief Financial Officer to freeze Winnipeg Transit fares at 2018 levels starting January 1, 2019 for a period of one calendar year, and that this freeze in fares be included as part of the 2019 budget process.

“Council made the very difficult decision last year to raise transit fares to help cover a projected revenue shortfall in transit, a department that is now projecting a year end surplus in the millions and that’s in the midst of conducting a comprehensive operational review,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. “For transit riders, even an inflationary adjustment in this context is incomprehensible and equally unnecessary.”