On October 1st, the Omnitrans Board of Directors approved a fare change policy to provide a discounted fare for veterans and a free fare for active duty military and uniformed police and fire officers. The new fare goes into effect beginning January 2015, and will be accepted on all Omnitrans, sbX and OmniGo buses. It is not valid for Access ADA service.
New Fare Policy
Under the new policy, veterans are required to show a valid Veterans ID card while boarding in order to receive discounted fare. Acceptable ID cards include:
Active duty military personnel must wear the appropriate uniform at the time of boarding and present a valid U.S. Unformed Services ID card indicating active service or a Common Access card indicating uniformed services or active duty.
Police and fire personnel must be in full Class A uniform at the time of boarding.
Price of New Veterans Fare
Veterans will be able to purchase special veterans passes for 50% less than the full fare. These passes will be accepted on all Omnitrans, sbX and OmniGo buses. No veteran fare will be offered on Access curb-to-curb service. The cost of the new veterans passes will be:
- Cash $0.75
- Day Pass $2.25
- 7-Day Pass $8.00
- 31-Day Pass $27.50.
Public feedback on the new veterans fare has been overwhelmingly positive.
Osvaldo Maysonet, Veterans Specialist for VetLink, a strong supporter of the new veterans fare, believes it will enable many in the community he serves to get back on their feet again.
“Thank you on behalf of all Veterans who come January will be able to access their community in a very affordable, reliable, and dignified way,” said Maysonet.
Osvaldo Maysonet and Jeremiah Bryant discuss the proposed veteran’s fare
Omnitrans held public meetings at its San Bernardino facility Wednesday to gather comments regarding a proposed fare policy change. The new policy would provide a discounted fare for Veterans and a free fare for Active Duty Military and Uniformed Police and Fire Officers.
Veterans Specialist Osvaldo Maysonet was on hand representing VetLink, an organization which helps connect veterans, active military, and their families with the services and destinations they rely on every day.
“This proposal will have a big impact on affordability for our veterans,” he said. “We have many vets in San Bernardino County who are dealing with low income or no income. Access to affordable transportation will connect them with education, healthcare and employment opportunities and possibly help them to become taxpayers again.”
Maysonet pointed out that there is a huge pride factor in being acknowledged for your service. “Somebody recognizing you for your military service without you having to ask—it really feels good. The Veterans Committee is very appreciative of this kind of public recognition. We’ve seen the great example with RTA, and how the number of veterans using public transportation continues to climb thanks to their discounted fare.”
He strongly believes that the Omnitrans proposed fare policy will help also raise general awareness of public transportation among local veterans.
“Many of them have never considered taking public transit before,” Maysonet explained. “This will make them consider it and encourage them to become regular riders. And they will tell others. We love sharing with our brothers and sisters about perks that we receive because we’re vets. That spreads like wildfire.”
Omnitrans Service Planning Manager, Jeremiah Bryant said that the public comment response to the proposed fare has been overwhelmingly favorable. “The feedback we’ve gotten from the community is that our military men and women deserve this. They feel it is a small way we can give back to those who have given so much to our country.”
Omnitrans will hold public hearings to gather public comments regarding a proposed fare policy change to provide a discounted fare for Veterans and a free fare for Active Duty Military and Uniformed Police and Fire Officers.
Omnitrans proposes offering Veterans with a discount on the purchases of Local Bus, Express Bus, sbX and OmniGo fares and passes identical to the discount provided to Senior and Disabled riders. This is essentially a 50% discount compared to full fare. No Veteran fare would be offered on Access service. The proposed Veterans fares are: Cash $0.75; Day Pass $2.25; 7-Day Pass $8.00 and 31-Day Pass $27.50.
Active Duty Military & Uniformed Police Officer and Firefighter Fare:
Omnitrans proposes allowing Active Duty Military and Uniformed Police Officers and Firefighters with the opportunity to ride Omnitrans buses for free, excluding Access service.
The proposed fare change will be brought before the Omnitrans Board of Directors for consideration in October 2014. If approved, it will become effective January 2015.
The public is invited to submit comments until Monday, September 22, 2014 by 5:00 P.M. using one of the methods listed below.
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Omnitrans Large Lobby Conference Room
1700 West Fifth Street
San Bernardino, California 92411
3:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M.
Omnitrans, 1700 West Fifth Street, San Bernardino, California 92411
Attention to Marketing & Planning Department.
BY PHONE: Call (909) 379-7150
BY EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org.
BY ONLINE COMMENT FORM: