Cornwall mayor questions cost of transit

Nigel
Nigel Armstrong
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Cornwall Mayor Barney Fullerton, left, looks at notes as Councillor Marlene Hunt, right, speaks at the July monthly meeting of the town council Wednesday, July 18.

CORNWALL — Cornwall Mayor Barney Fullerton did some math at a recent council meeting and figuratively drew blood.

At issue is the transit system and the number of riders from Cornwall.

“Just for whatever this is worth, from Jan.1, 2012 to June 30, 2012, 8,134 people rode the Cornwall bus, whether they rode into town or they rode out of town, or whether they came half way,” said Fullerton at a recent council meeting.

“That cost the municipality $32,920. Each head that gets on the bus, the ratepayers of Cornwall subsidize them to the tune of $4.04 per head,” he said.

“I honestly do think the ratepayers have to let us know where they stand and I tried to think of a way of something like the Plan B plebiscite or how you can gear this up so one person gets one vote,” said Fullerton. “I’m not having any luck coming up with a strategy but I do think this thing is bleeding and either we are going to let it bleed or put a Band Aid on it.”

“We could argue this until the cows come home,” said Councillor Peter Meggs.

“Yes, we could,” said Fullerton. “Minister (Wes) Sheridan, he opted out of the County Line Express at a $14,000 subsidy a month, and it ceased, and Mike Cassidy (T3 Trius Transit) came back with another offer of $9,500 a month and it’s back in operation.

“Can we get a better rate?” asked Fullerton. “Can we cut that $33,000 down to $22,000 or something? I’m just saying it’s a lot of money. If we invest in shelters, the going rate for those is $10,000 a piece, plus an annual maintenance fee of $1,200 a piece. On 10 shelters that is $12,000 a year on top of that.”

The mayor said a recent poll on The Guardian website said people in the town of Cornwall don’t find the bus convenient.

“If you had a run every half hour it might be more convenient but again, that costs more money,” said Fullerton.

Councillor Marlene Hunt said the same kind of analysis of recreation could produce almost similar results.

“I think it’s wonderful, our recreation and sports programs and facilities but if you look at the capital costs, and the cost for all our workers, and not everybody uses it, but I support it because it’s for the public good, you would run into the same thing.

“We definitely don’t make money off recreation, not after we pay for everything but it’s a public service,” said Hunt.

“That is the same with transit. It is new to the Island and I know it’s difficult but honestly I really think we need to move forward and have more bus runs. We also need a second bus run that would turn at the North River lights and go down Lakeview Drive, down into that area, and down the Kingston Road. We are only doing half the town.

“To do it properly we do need two buses at least, so I think we need to grow it and hang on and let it happen,” said Hunt.

Headline Info Box

Organizations: The Guardian

Geographic location: Cornwall, North River, Kingston Road

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  • andre' in cornwall
    July 27, 2012 - 20:18

    Oh Beer for my hair, farming on paper, cleanness of hospital overlooked from a desk and too a bus system! Try Mr. Mayor to take a bus ride one stop up and/or down from your home! When will it be there? If you miss such a blessing, as too arrive within a reasonable lateness that you see it’s but end, as you step out your door, could you run to catch said delight that Cornwall invest too run up and down University Ave (now trying to get out of taking care of UPEI shuttle) as you are fitter than I? Which way would you go? I was waiting just the other noon hour (July 24,2012) at save easy (my hair blowing in wind) and I began too go towards the highway (as the bus was 12 minutes late, picking up daycare) too hitch a ride as I did July 11 when bus was 5 min later than usual and getting on, I got off because Mike Cassidy had so many daycare booked, some were on floor! Do you like telling people you would be there at 12:30 and get there 10 minutes either way? Or how about you giving someone a ride and they make you wait every time for 17 minutes after poking their head out the door? Why does it cost so much; the tune of $4.04 per head, to go from Cornwall to the Charlottetown Mall? Mike Cassidy (T3 Trius Transit) came back with another offer to the HST fellow: yet, stiffs Cornwall? Hope they don’t use the stuff in cups taped to post at bus door, as a guide! You, Cornwall Mayor Barney Fullerton did some math at a recent council meeting answering the one C. Frizzle; and figuratively drew blood? I didn’t see no blood, but, I do see shaft! Nigel Armstrong get a figure on ratepayers of Charlottetown? If it cost $4.04 per head for Cornwall, Mayor Barney Fullerton, sir how much is Cornwall paying for its bus too run University Ave and how much does Charlottetown ratepayers subsidize Mike’s poor set up at? Bus running University Ave every 15 minutes can’t do it; yet, they say they are too be! Instead of half hour, why not hour and half, two hours that people can count on…not the get people who got two cars too work and/or home on time and they use car or on vacation! UPEI Students could not depend on a bus out here, nor can an average bloke! Invest in shelters, the going rate for those is $10,000 a piece, plus an annual maintenance fee of $1,200 a piece then no bus? Forget shelters, invest, no insist on professional service instead of con-am! T3 Mike Cassidy instead of (from) behind desk….