MAJOR UPDATE: JANUARY 10, 2014
The Delaware Transit Corporation has released a modified plan for their transit redesign, and the details of the new paratransit plan show they heard your voices! You can read the full document here (paratransit is on page 3), and we've summarized the major differences between this and the original plan below.
- The fare changes will go into effect on July 1, 2014, not March 2.
- Fares will be increased in three stages- on July 1 of 2014, 2015, and 2016- instead of two ending March 2, 2015.
- The maximum fare for one-county ADA trips- those which begin or end within ¾ mile of a fixed route- will rise to $3 on July 1, 2014 and to $4 on July 1, 2016.
- The maximum fare for non-ADA one-county trips- those trips which begin or end more than ¾ mile from a fixed route- will rise from $4 on July 1, 2014 to $6 on July 1, 2016.
- The implementation of trip negotiation for both ADA and non-ADA trips will be delayed until September 1, 2014 while DTC works with the community to develop alternative travel services.
- This plan includes a statement that all customers, regardless of where their trips are, will continue to receive transportation services.
Delaware currently has the country's most extensive paratransit service, and many, if not most, adults with disabilities depend on this service to be part of their community and especially to be able to work, which is a significant goal for our state. But proposed changes will reduce the transportation options so many people with autism depend on, especially south of the C&D Canal in New Castle County. Changes are needed to keep transit sustainable for people with and without disabilities, but this plan is not the answer!
IT IS TIME TO TAKE ACTION!
The Delaware Transit Corporation, which operates fixed route and paratransit buses, is proposing SIGNIFICANT changes to paratransit services (see page 4 for all changes). These are to take effect March 2, 2014 and include:
- ADA-compliant paratransit will only be to and from places within ¾ mile of a bus route. One-way fares will increase to $3 (has been $2 since 1989) and to $4 in March 2015.
- Outside of that zone, accessible transit will be booked based on availability of service. One-way fares will increase to $6 and to $7 in March 2015.
- Negotiating pick-up times up to 60 minutes before or after the requested time outside the ADA corridor.
- A new status of “conditional eligibility” for riders who can use some fixed route service but not all.
- Eliminate the clause that exempts medical trips from counting against the number of times a rider can miss their ride, and increased enforcement of that limit.
TELL DTC AND YOUR LEGISLATORS
to support a one-year delay so DTC and disability advocates can create a better plan!
Submit your comments through the DTC website at www.dartfirststate.com/publichearing.
Contact information for all legislators is here, and you can find out who your legislators are at www.votesmart.org.
Autism Delaware's Testimony to Office of Management and Budget on Paratransit
Autism Delaware's Comments to Delaware Transit Corporation