Michael Johnsen MP, Member for Upper Hunter and Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture and Resources, today announced that the Nationals in Government will ease the cost of travel for rural and regional seniors from January 2020, through the rollout of the $250 Regional Seniors Transport Card.
Mr Johnsen said the $250 Regional Seniors’ Transport Card was announced during the 2019 NSW State Election campaign and will help thousands of seniors in the bush.
“Travel is one of the most significant household costs for residents living in regional NSW, and the Nationals in Government are committed to reducing that cost for our seniors,” Mr Johnsen said.
“This is why, during the 2019 State Election campaign, the NSW Nationals promised to implement the Regional Seniors Transport Card.”
“I am proud to be a Member of a Government that is following through with our promise to rural and regional NSW.”
“This Card will provide eligible recipients with $250 a year for the purchase of fuel and taxi services from participating providers in rural and regional NSW, as well as pre-booked NSW TrainLink services.”
“As per our commitment, eligible seniors are those who reside in regional NSW, and are either aged pensioners or Commonwealth Senior Health Card holders, can take advantage of the Regional Seniors Transport Card from January 2020.”
“The $250 can be used for fuel and taxis from participating providers in rural and regional NSW, and, pre-booked NSW TrainLink services.”
Mr Johnsen continued, saying the initiative complemented a suite of cost of living measures already rolled out.
“We know it can be a bit challenging for country seniors to travel to medical appointments or to see loved ones,” Mr Johnsen said.
“With further distances to travel, they rely more heavily on private travel which can be a more expensive option.
“This initiative will ease the pressure on seniors to access our local essential services, and beyond, and help address cost of living pressures in the bush,” Mr Johnsen concluded.
The Regional Seniors’ Transport Card policy follows a recommendation from the 2016 NSW Parliamentary Committee on Community Services into the access to Transport for Seniors and Disadvantaged People in Rural and Regional NSW.
Seniors must be living in Regional NSW, outside Newcastle and Wollongong City Council boundaries, and be either an aged pensioner or a Commonwealth Senior Health Cardholder.
Further details about the rollout of the $250 Regional Seniors’ Transport Cards will be made available later in the year.