SBS Transit has just received the report from the GPC and we are currently studying the recommendations. Our initial response is that the proposed new formula will better reflect the cost structure of our business and is likely to be more responsive to changes in the business environment compared to the existing formula.
Our key concern, however, is how the formula will be finally used in deciding what the adjustment in fares should be each year. This is with reference to the section of the report which states:
“Taking into consideration the feedback of the different groups, the Committee recommends that notwithstanding the fact that the fare adjustment formula determines the supportable fare adjustment in a given year; the PTC should retain the flexibility to vary the adjustment or to reject it, particularly when there are extenuating circumstances such as the following:
||Adverse economic conditions; and
||Significant deterioration in the overall affordability of public transport fares.
SBS Transit feels that the workings should be transparent especially if the PTC should decide to reject or vary the adjustment from that provided for by the formula.