June 20, 2012 - Minutes

PDF Document Printer-Friendly Minutes

City of Richmond Meeting Minutes

Public Works & Transportation Committee





Wednesday, June 20, 2012



Anderson Room

Richmond City Hall



Councillor Linda Barnes, Chair

Councillor Chak Au, Vice-Chair

Councillor Derek Dang

Councillor Harold Steves



Councillor Linda McPhail


Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:02 p.m.








It was moved and seconded



That the minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee held on Wednesday, May 24, 2012, be adopted as circulated.












(File Ref. No. 10-6360-12-01) (REDMS No. 3516106)



Victor Wei, Director, Transportation, noted that the figures presented in  Table 2 (Impact of Proposed Changes to MRN and BICCS Funding), of the report are subject to change as a result of TransLink’s current funding situation.



It was moved and seconded



That the map of road sections proposed to be added to TransLink’s Major Road Network, as shown in Attachment 1 and described in Table 3 of the staff report dated May 24, 2012 from the Director, Transportation, be endorsed.








(File Ref. No. 01-0154-04/2012-Vol 01) (REDMS No. 3550714)



Victor Wei, Director, Transportation, advised that TransLink is planning on conducting a public consultation over the summer of 2012, and that the earliest a report on the matter may be anticipated is the fall of 2012.



Frances Clark, Richmond Centre for Disability (RCD), expressed concerns about the process undertaken by TransLink in relation to the proposed changes to the TaxiSaver Program.  Ms. Clark stated that the decision about the TaxiSaver Program was made at an in-camera TransLink meeting, and was then placed on an open agenda without warning.  She expressed her belief that TransLink should be investigating methods for improving the current program rather than eliminating it, and made the following comments about the services currently provided by HandiDart: (i) users must book with HandiDart many days in advance, and even then, there is no guarantee of service; (ii) users who receive service from HandiDart may not be guaranteed a ride back home; (iii) the TaxiSaver program assists those with lower incomes and medical issues; (iv) a ride from HandiDart has an associated cost of approximately $30.00 and a ride using the TaxiSaver Program costs approximately $8.00.



Aileen McCormick, 12931 Gilbert Road, advised that TransLink has contracted out the HandiDart services to an American company.  She further advised that the HandiDart contract will expire in 2015, and expressed her belief that the public should have access to the contract details.  Ms. McCormick also noted that Peter Hill, Manager Access Transit, TransLink, will be making a presentation in October, 2012, and that she would send members of City Council with an invitation to attend the presentation.



Louise Young, Coordinator, Richmond Seniors Network, advised the Committee of a meeting taking place at Richmond Addiction Services (RAS), at which a discussion related to transportation for seniors, including the TaxiSaver Program will take place.  Ms. Young stated that the TaxiSaver Program is only one part of the system, and expressed concern about how the entire system currently places vulnerable seniors at risk.  She expressed her opinion that the entire system needs to be reviewed to meet the needs of the increasing population of seniors.



A discussion then ensued among staff and members of Committee about:




the need for a study by TransLink on how to make the system more efficient;




the long waits HandiDart users experience as other users are dropped off.  It was noted that there are usually fiver users on a trip, and some may have to wait for an hour or longer before reaching their destination;




how the TaxiSaver Program provides flexibility, and that most users prefer to use the TaxiSaver Program instead of HandiDart; and




the need for enhancements to the TaxiSaver Program to reduce the amount of abuse and fraud.



It was moved and seconded



That TransLink be requested to:




maintain the TaxiSaver Program;




conduct full consultation, particularly with the Richmond Seniors Advisory Committee and the Richmond Centre for Disability; and




investigate enhancements to the system during the consultation period that meet the needs of the users.







A Richmond Resident, spoke about the benefits of the TaxiSaver Program, and the concerns related to HandiDart.  The delegation stated that since HandiDart does not allow users to bring their carts on board, those who need transportation in order to go grocery shopping are unable to use HandiDart.  The delegation also expressed her concerns about the financial burden of transportation for seniors with a limited income, and stated that people with disabilities such as blindness are eligible for free bus passes regardless of their income level.








Andy Bell, Drainage and Roads Project Engineer, provided an update on the Fraser River Freshnet as per his memo, titled Fraser River Freshnet Udate – June 19, 2012 (on file City Clerk’s Office).



Victor Wei, Director, Transportation, provided an update on the traffic lights at No. 1 Road and Chatham, and stated that the design would be completed over the summer of 2012, and implementation will follow in the fall.  Mr. Wei was requested by the Chair to provide an update regarding the traffic lights to the Army Navy Air Force (ANAF).








It was moved and seconded



That the meeting adjourn (4:42 p.m.).






Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee of the Council of the City of Richmond held on Wednesday, June 20, 2012.



Councillor Linda Barnes


Shanan Dhaliwal

Executive Assistant

City Clerk’s Office