The City Council’s City Services Committee voted unanimously to recommend that City Council support an initiative that would allow local students in the Pasadena Unified School District and Pasadena City College to ride free Metro buses as part of a pilot program which will last until December 31, 2022..
The GoPass program, formerly known as the Fareless System Initiative (FSI), went into effect on December 1.
âI’m very happy we’re doing this,â said Board Member Felicia Williams, who sits on the committee. âIt’s a great program and it will help our children a lot.
GoPass provides free boarding schools for K-12 and community college students who attend participating school districts and private schools for two school years. In order for students to board free of charge, the school district or college they attend must also participate in the program.
“A recent study by the Hope Center found that students spend one-fifth of their total living expenses on transportation, and this is especially true for community college students who travel almost exclusively to campus,” said the Metro CEO Stephanie Wiggins at City News Service earlier today. month.
âIt’s clear that students on subsidized transportation do better in school, allowing them to focus on what really matters: their education. We created the GoPass program because we don’t want transportation to be one of the barriers students face in completing their college education.
The GoPass pilot project is expected to reduce Pasadena Transit’s fare revenue by $ 225,000 over the two-year pilot period. Pasadena would be made partially whole by receiving a proportional amount of cost-sharing revenues provided by participating school districts and colleges and by one-time additional funding from Metro.
The LA Community College District has already registered for the program.
There are 33 school districts and six community colleges interested in joining the GoPass program, according to a report from city staff.
A cost-sharing agreement has been developed for participating K-12 school districts that includes a cost-sharing rate of $ 3.00 per student per year for all students in the participating school district. Participating community colleges must commit to a cost-sharing rate of $ 7.00 per student per year for all students enrolled at the participating community college.
Metro staff have initiated conversations with the Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD) to solicit participation in the program. The city has also contacted the school district to encourage participation.
City officials also provided Metro with a list of private high schools located within a 0.25 mile radius of Pasadena Transit and Metro and their respective contacts.
So far, Metro has not heard from representatives of private schools.
âI hope it will be a great success,â said Deputy Mayor Andy Wilson.
The recommended duration of the pilot program for Pasadena Transit is to launch it no later than February 1, 2022 and continue until June 30, 2023.
The article will now go to City Council.