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October 27, 2017 7:08 pm

City Commits to 5 Years of Funding for Highway 16 Transit

Monday, January 30, 2017 @ 5:20 PM

Prince George, B.C. – The City of Prince George  has agreed to  a five year commitment  to fund the new  Transit service  along highway 16.

At a cost of $50 thousand dollars  per year,   the City had originally  only  signed on for one year,  but there were concerns raised by other communities along the highway  about the future of the  service if P.G.  didn’t  sign on for a longer term.

The approval has no  impact on the  2017 budget,  as the $50 thousand for 2017   has already been built into the spending plan for this year.

Councillor Susan Scott says  there have been plenty of rumours flying about  who  will be able to use the service,  but Mayor Hall put that rumour to rest.  “As you know it ( the service) came about as a result of Mr. Oppal’s report (report on missing and murdered women in B.C) on providing safe transportation  for those travelling along Highway 16.  That’s where the  crux of this started with Government,  so they turned it  to the  Transit Authority to come up with  a model to come up with  a delivery system  We have had no discussions around  potential restrictions on riders on highway 16.”

Mayor Hall says  the  plan has the Provincial Government covering the capital expenses   and  communities along the route would share  in a percentage basis  to fund the operational side.  “Originally when this started there was discussion about a 3 to five year  (funding) commitment,  we decided to take the one year route for 2017,  subsequent conversations with Transit and the other stakeholders along highway 16  there was some concern about  the only one year commitment, and if we were only in for one year,   what would that mean for the entire operation over the 5 year period.  So if we opted  out  after one year, it would certainly put a financial strain on small communities   like Telkwa, the Hazelton area, Burns Lake,  and this (5 year commitment)  is what they have requested.”

Mayor Hall says one leg of the  service has already started running between Smithers and Telkwa  “The concern  is to provide safety along Highway 16 so they are not hitch hiking, to reduce that kind of situation which we all know has   turned out to be not so pleasant over the years.”


Excellent news, particularly for families living at, or below, the poverty line. If the food bank lines are any indication, this public transportation service along Hwy 16 will be well used. Now women have a SAFE option for travel, as opposed to hitch hiking.

    Safe options have existed for year!

    Call a friend and ask for a ride!

    Call some friends to arrange for a group trip!

    Call a Band Council member and ask for a ride!

    Call the Chief and ask for a ride!

    Ask the Chief and Council to purchase and licence a vehicle for band member use!

    Take the train!

    Take Greyhound! Oops, Greyhound cut service because nobody was taking them!

    BH, are you suggesting that with this new service, we will not see women hitchhiking along Hwy. 16? I sure hope that is the case as any life lost is a tragedy, but….

    With all of the publicity and all of the warnings, people are still hitchhiking! If the shuttle doesn’t fit with someone’s schedule, will they wait to travel at a time when it does, or will they hitchhike?

    That’s the “Million Dollar” question and only time and the ridership numbers will tell the answer!

      It is a BC Transit bus. You have to pay 2.75 to ride on it. People mention the convenience of it, ok so my property tax now pays for convenience in another city? How does it even remotely benefit those it was designed to protect?

      I am wondering why PG property taxes pay for this service, or any along the highway. I also question those using the guilt card will this make any difference to the HOT? I challenge any to go through the list and show how just one victim could have been spared using this system. All the brains we had working on this problem and this is the best we come up with. Will this system save even one life or just mean someone can leave their car at home and ride the bus to work?

      If it is for convenience why not ask Council to support it on those merits?

      Answer these questions for me and I will whole heartedly support my property tax dollars going to other areas of BC.

      Not aimed at Hart Guy but a continuation of the conversation

      slinky states; “I am wondering why PG property taxes pay for this service, or any along the highway.” slinky’s statement is a divide and conquer statement, pitting Prince George against the rest of the towns and villages along the Hwy of Tears. Sorry slinky, this highway public transportation system is made by us, and for us… what can be wrong with that?

      At least our tax dollars are staying in the north, yet we will have people of slinky’s ilk complaining about how our provincial government spends billions of dollars on news bridges and new sky train routes in the lower mainland, with hardly any being spent in Northern BC. Leave it to the slinky’s of the world to crap all over a good thing.

      Not divide and conquer at all, you are halarious.

      Does my property tax now pay for public transit in other cities along the highway? Why don’t I then pay for transit in Kelowna with my property taxes? I am not talking about our Provincial Government spending – this is the city along with the 3 percent increase they feel they need to tack on every year – it is called Municipal Spending – it has diddly to do with the province.

I don’t remember the city having a referendum to raise our taxes $50,000 per year to subsidize various crown ministries and communities west of here for cheapo bus rides for wards of the state…
Expensive brownie points in Victoria for the mayor at our expense.

As per Hart Guy he pretty well laid it all out. Why we should have to cover some of the costs is beyond me and probably some of the other taxpayers Some people talk about responsibility, culture, caring, etc. Maybe the initiative should fall directly on the people’s shoulders, as per Hart Guy’s great options yet again! This is ridiculous in reality!

This will prove to be a very helpful service for many people. I am sorry if you yourself would not benefit, and I am sorry if nobody you know personally would benefit. However, that is not an acceptable argument to strike this down.

    So pray tell why doesn’t my property tax now pay for a BC Transit service from Fort St John to Dawson or Hudson Hope?

    Good comment sgsc, a highway public transportation system made by the north, for the north. Knew guy who was FASE, had the mental ability of a 5 year old, he tried hitch hiking from a small community into Prince George in the middle of a very cold winter’s night. He got to Prince George eventually, they had to amputate most of his fingers and toes because of severe frost bite, but he did make it to Prince George, and had a lengthy stay at the hospital.

    Oh, did I mention the stay at the hospital was at the taxpayers expense?

      Did you mention your comment was a deflection and had nothing to do with the topic at hand whatsoever? Did you mention that the “new transit bus” stops running at 5pm after making 4 to 6 runs and does not operate on Sundays?

How do you get from your Home to the Bus, many are living many Miles away from Hwy16?
I don’t think it will work, but plenty will be spend on it, don’t worry it’s only Money. If you live out of Town, you are on your own, don’t have a Car, don’t have Friend, you are stuck , just the Way it is and many Places don’t even have a Taxi.

    Call uber I guess. Maybe they should get a pile of pilotless Tesla’s running around the countryside. I don’t think there is any thought given to the process just something so people can think they have contributed to a solution and sleep better at night.

Hey sgsc, there are many arguments to strike it down, read the comments!

The most pertinent strike against this plan is that a ride will not be available at any given time, in a given place, for someone who would use such a service.
Some will plan ahead, and take the scheduled bus.
Many will make a snap decision to travel/get away whatever, those people will not be waiting until ‘tomorrow’ when the bus is there.

There has to be another solution.

Will there be fentanyl on board? and a professional to administer if needed? Just asking.

    Bwahahahah! Then they will have to have a portable save injection site!

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