RTL STRONGLY DENOUNCES PLANNED CUTS BY ARTM
Longueuil, June 3, 2021 — The Board of Directors of the Réseau de transport de Longueuil (RTL) strongly denounces the budget cuts announced by the Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain (ARTM), revealed on Wednesday in various media outlets. A resolution to this effect was adopted unanimously by the members of the RTL’s Board of Directors at the public meeting of June 3, 2021.
“This new wave of cuts runs completely counter to the needs of public transit users, at a time when restrictions are being lifted and businesses are reopening. The impact of these budget measures would be felt in 2022, 2023, and 2024, just as the government has announced that Cégep and university students will be returning to in-person learning in the fall. Not to mention the fact that the REM, which will begin operating in spring 2022, will be relying on the RTL’s buses to run smoothly,” said Jonathan Tabarah, Chairman of the RTL Board of Directors.
It’s worth pointing out that the RTL was quick to respond and adjust to the financial challenges created by the pandemic, making cuts to staff and services on the order of 10% of its 2020 budget—cuts that will continue into 2021 and 2022. Under the scenario laid out by the ARTM, the RTL would be the only transit corporation in the metropolitan region to see its renumeration decrease over the three-year period in question and would take a bigger hit than the other transit corporations in this anticipated second wave of cutbacks.
“We want to reassure our users that we do not endorse these measures in any way. On the contrary, we just finished developing a plan to revive public transit, which we are expecting to unveil to our users in the next few weeks. This recovery plan contains proposals for a new bus network, in response to requests made by users during the first round of our consultations. We will be informing the relevant authorities of our complete and utter disagreement with this move,” concluded Tabarah.
About the RTL
The Réseau de transport de Longueuil (RTL) is the main transit provider for individuals within the five cities that comprise the Agglomération de Longueuil.
The third-largest public transit organization in Québec, the RTL operates a network of 793 kilometres. With some 1,100 employees, the RTL is a major employer that contributes to the economic vitality of the region.
Ever receptive to its users, the RTL plays a key role in the lives of the people and the communities it serves by providing solutions that are efficient, innovative, and adapted to the evolving needs
of its clientele. Improving quality of life for the citizens of the Agglomération de Longueuil is a top priority for the RTL.