CORNWALL, Ontario – The province of Ontario has announced they are investing $659,305 in Cornwall Transit to offset costs related to COVID-19.
“This is great news for the City of Cornwall,” said Jim McDonell, MPP for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry. “COVID-19 continues to impact our transit system and this additional funding will ensure local transit can continue to operate and provide a vital service for those who need it.”
According to the province, some municipal transit services have seen a 90 per cent reduction in ridership since the start of the pandemic. The province has set aside a total of $650 million for all municipalities to help offset loss of transit revenue.
For the City of Cornwall, at the start of the pandemic ridership was already reduced artificially through the implementation of social distancing rules on buses, which included keeping the seats directly behind the driver vacant from passengers.
“We heard from municipalities and we are responding to their need for more support as COVID-19 continues to result in lost revenue and additional costs for transit systems,” said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation. “Transit operators have done an incredible job keeping transit operating during this challenging time, and this support will help ensure there is reliable transportation for people can get to work or pick up essential items.”
Mayor Bernadette Clement applauded the infusion of cash to a service she sees as essential to Cornwall residents.
“Cornwall Transit connects our residents with work, shopping, family, and health care,” said Bernadette Clement, Mayor of Cornwall. “Our incredible operators and behind-the-scenes staff adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic’s challenges. This funding sends a strong message: public transit is vital.”