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Transport operators threaten court action against JUTC

Published:Monday | April 14, 2014 | 8:05 AM

KINGSTON, Jamaica:

Transport operators say they will not withdraw their services as was expected today despite their opposition to the reforms by the Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC).

The reforms were implemented last week and transport operators had threatened to withdraw their service this week in protest.

However, President of the Transport Operators Development Sustainable Services, Egeton Newman, says operators will instead be seeking a court injunction to block aspects of the implementation.

One of the main grouses is the JUTC's decision to restrict rural stage carriers from picking-up passengers and letting them off in certain areas of the Kingston Metropolitan Transport Region.

Newman says the Government's decision is illegal and transport operators are prepared to put up a strong fight against the move.

He also says despite indications given last November that new rules were coming, the JUTC diverted from agreed commitments and introduced new requirements which sub-franchise operators could not meet in time.

Newman is accusing the JUTC of being unreasonable in its attempt to get sub-franchise operators to become compliant with the new regulations.

He also says the fees are unaffordable, and have increased, in some instances, from $250,000 for some operators to $750,000.

Last Wednesday, some operators withdrew their services to highlight their displeasure with the new sub-franchise fees.

But the JUTC's Managing Director, Colin Campbell, maintains that the sub-franchise fee increases are reasonable.


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