Eau Claire (WQOW) - Nearly half of the riders on Eau Claire city buses have annual incomes of $0-$15,000 a year according to a new survey. Now the city council is poised to give them a break on bus fares.
The Eau Claire City Council will hold a public hearing Monday night on a proposal to drop fares for low-income residents to $1.50 for the cash fare. That's $.25 less than the current bus fare. The cost of a monthly pass would drop $5, to a rate of $45.
Verification would be done by passengers presenting their WIC, BadgerCare or other low-income program cards.
Under the plan, those changes would start July 1, and be in effect until the end of the year. Then, for next year, the city manager would consider budgeting to reduce the low-income fare to 85 cents, and $25 for a monthly pass. However, he won't commit to that until staff has a better handle on the city's 2019 budget.
Monday's public hearing starts at 7:00 p.m. The city council is set to vote on the plan Tuesday afternoon.