The SuperGold Card off-peak public transport concession scheme will receive additional funding of $14 million over the next two financial years as part of Budget 2013.
This will bring the funding for the scheme in 2013/14 to $24 million and $26 million for 2014/15.
An increasing number of people are turning 65, and more cardholders are making use of the scheme. This has increased demand with patronage growing 19.9 percent from nearly 9,000,000 trips taken in 2009/10 to over 10,000,000 in 2011/12. Transport fares have also increased, meaning that the amount required to reimburse operators has grown.
The Ministry of Transport will undertake a targeted review of some aspects of the travel concession.
It will look at:
- reviewing whether the temporary moratorium on new transport services entering the concession scheme could be lifted
- if the moratorium was lifted, what criteria would be used to determine entry into the scheme
- considering a national policy for the use of smartcards under the SuperGold card travel concession scheme
- considering reimbursement calculation methods including average fare calculations.
Eligibility of existing services and entitlements of SuperGold card holders are not under review.
The Minister of Transport will report back on the outcomes of the targeted review in 2014/15.
Other funding for Vote Transport from Budget 2013 includes:
- $94 million for the 2013/14 financial year to continue government investment in the KiwiRail Turnaround Plan
- $7.1 million of new funding across 2013/14 – 2015/16, for the construction of a new search and rescue satellite ground station
- $1.4 million of additional funding for the MetService during the 2013/14 financial year, to continue delivery of forecasting services
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