The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

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The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Upcoming student vote will decide future MTD pass fare


The ongoing bus pass debate between City College and Metropolitan Transit District has finally reached its endgame.

The Associated Student Senate voted in favor of the proposed new Metropolitan Transit District (MTD) contract.

The current MTD contract allows student to pay $26 for an unlimited bus pass every semester. The new proposal includes a fee increase of $6.50 for Fall 2014, plus an additional $2.50 in the summer.

If the new contract at the end of October doesn’t pass, students who ride the bus to school will have to pay a monthly $50 bus pass.

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“I want the students to vote yes to keep the bus sticker,” said the Associated Student President Elie Katzenson.

She hopes the students who drive their cars to school will realize they don’t want to have more parking trouble than they already have.

A link on pipeline will allow the student body to vote, and it will remain open from Oct. 21 to Oct. 25.

The motion will be approved if more than 50 percent of students vote yes.

“Online students should probably be excluded, but we’re going to follow up on that,” said senate advisor Allison Curtis.

The senate is working on a campaign that specifies the key-points of the whole issue, and is collaborating with the graphic design department to create informative posters. They are planning to share the posters on Facebook and set them up in different campus areas, the Transit Center and inside MTD buses.

After Oct. 14, the senators will be making classroom presentations to share the information they have with the students.

Senators even proposed the idea of going directly to the bus stops to spread the word one-on-one about what is going on.

“In their free time, senators can go there to meet up directly with students to talk about it,” said Gracie Maynetto, vice president of senate affairs.

General Manager of MTD Sherrie Fisher is coming to talk about the proposal and to offer assistance in the advertising campaign to make students aware of the problem.

MTD wants students to vote yes, and since they have a larger budget for advertising, they want to partner up with City College. Superintendent President Dr. Lori Gaskin is in support of the new contract.

Recently, Governor Jerry Brown came to an agreement with the federal government to restore $1.6 billion in public transit grants that had previously been lost due to pension reform. The deal will allow California Transit workers to keep their pensions and MTD to keep the majority of its state funding.

MTD officials say this will allow them to provide more quality service and buy new articulated buses on line that specifically service City College.

The senate next meets 9 a.m. Friday, Oct. 11.

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