Baird Government Must Reject Unfair Opal Increases

NSW Labor is calling on the Baird Government to reject harsh Opal fare increases which will see regular train commuters hardest hit.

Under this proposal fares will increase by an average of 4.2 per cent a year, which is more than triple the current rate of inflation.

Five-day-a-week train commuters travelling from Hornsby to Central face an increase of 38 per cent over the next two years.

Annual fares are set to jump by up to $756.08 a year by 1st July 2018.

Free Opal card travel after eight trips will also be scrapped.

Labor MLC for Hornsby, Greg Donnelly said it is cruel and unfair that commuters travelling from Hornsby are set to be punished by the government for simply catching a train to and from work.

“Commuters in Hornsby shouldn’t be forced off overpriced trains onto overcrowded roads”, Greg Donnelly said.

Commuters were outraged at the proposed new fare structure released by the Government late last year.

The $2.50 Gold Opal ticket for seniors will go up to $3.60 in July and then increase to $4 by 2018.

 “Why does this Government insist on slugging pensioners, who often solely rely on public transport?”, said Greg Donnelly.

Despite the huge volume of submissions to IPART slamming the changes, the revised report still leaves regular public transport passengers unfairly out of pocket.

JOURNEY CURRENT YEARLY FARE NEW YEARLY FARE (as of July 1 2016) 2018 YEARLY FARE % INCREASE BY 2018
Hornsby to Central(26.45km) $2,005.12 $2,391.48 $2,761.20 38%

The weekly travel cap of $60 will increase to $64 on 1st July 2016, before jumping to $72 by 2018.

Commuters from outer suburbs who take advantage of the daily cap will see their maximum single journey fare increase from $15 to $20 by 1st July 2018.