By Madi Wong and Valerie Dittrich
Ryerson University has announced that the RU-Pass will not be included in students’ mandatory ancillary fees this school year.
In November 2018 The Eye reported that the RU-Pass would be administered in fall 2019 after a successful referendum.
The pass would have allowed students to have unlimited access to bus, subway and streetcar transportation for a mandatory fee of $280 per semester, totalling $564 for both fall and winter. In addition, students would be charged $2 as an administrative fee if they are studying full-time.
But after the release of the Student Choice Initiative (SCI) guidelines earlier this year, which outline which fees are deemed mandatory for students to pay, Ryerson and the TTC were still undecided on their agreement for the RU-Pass.
On Tuesday, the university released an email on behalf of Jen McMillen, vice-provost students, stating that the RU-Pass will not be administered in September 2019.
The email stated that under SCI guidelines, “only transit pass programs with fully executed agreements in place prior to Jan. 17, 2019 could be considered compulsory.” The RU-Pass still does not have a signed agreement between the university and the TTC.
Hayley Waldman, TTC communications advisor, said in an emailed statement that due to SCI guidelines, the TTC will be reevaluating the transit program.
“The TTC will be re-evaluating the U-pass program discount level as part of a 5-year fare policy and 10-year fare collection strategy with a target to be completed in early 2020,” said Waldman.
The five-year fare policy and the 10-year fare collection strategy is a partnership program with the TTC and Metrolinx with the goal to integrate PRESTO within the fare collection system, according to a 2016 report.