€2.2m transport subsidy to Rīga delayed over questions on disability fares

The Public Transport Council on March 29 delayed an advance subsidy payment of €2.2 million to the Riga City Council for the transportation of passengers with disabilities in the second quarter of 2019, LETA learned at the council’s meeting.

Kristiāns Godiņš, board chairman of the Road Transport Administration, called on the Public Transport Council to delay the subsidy to the Riga City Council for the transportation of passengers with disabilities for a month, explaining that the Road Transport Administration has to make sure that the money will be spent on the intended purpose.

Godiņš added that there have been cases already in the past where subsidies to municipalities have been held back for various reasons. “This is the practice and it will continue in the cases where we have suspicions. The measure is not intended to punish Riga. It is our duty to make sure the financing reaches the right destination,” the head of the Road Transport Administration said.

Upon analyzing Rīgas Satiksme municipal transport company’s information on the transportation of passengers with disabilities, who are entitled to fare discounts, the Road Transport Administration grew suspicious that the transportation statistics on this group of passengers might be incorrect. The Road Transport Administration therefore asked the Public Transport Council to decide on delaying the subsidy payment to the city council until the situation is clarified.

The Public Transport Council is a government council under the Road Transport Administration; it includes regional planners and ministry representatives. 

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