The Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Ms Sui Ngok-han, said in the Legislative Council today (7th) that it will step up the crackdown on the illegal use of the $2 Ride Concession Scheme, with the MTR doubling the surcharge from $500 to $1,1 and the light rail fine from $000 to $290.
Sun Yuhan also pointed out that the Transport Department will work with operators to strengthen law enforcement from this month. He reminded the public not to use the $2 discount in violation of the law, such as not meeting the age requirement or using another person's discount card, etc., if found not only will be fined by the operator, but also transferred to the police for follow-up investigation, and may face prosecution and imprisonment.
Former Secretary for Transport and Housing, Mr Cheung Ping-leung, said in an interview that when he left the Government, he had advised his subordinates not to relax the applicable age of the $2 ride-hailing scheme, which also expressed concern about the Government's long-term financial capacity, and suggested that $2 be raised to $3.
Replying to Hon Di Chi-yuen on the financial commitment brought about by the $2 concession for long cars and the Government's efforts to combat the illegal use of the concession at the Legislative Council meeting today, Mr Sun Yuk-han pointed out that in 2022, the Government has enhanced the plan to reduce the age of eligible persons to include 60 to 64 years old, and expanded the scope of application to transport such as estate buses, taking into account factors such as population ageing and price increases in the budget, and that the expenditure of the previous year was within the Government's budget.
A total of 1304,<> suspected violations were found
He also said that the Government's investigation into the Abuse of Ineligible Passengers Scheme had found 1,304 suspected cases of irregularities, pointing out that the Transport Department would work with operators to strengthen enforcement from this month. He reminded the public not to use the $2 ride discount in violation of the law, and if discovered, they will not only be fined by the operator, but may also be prosecuted and may be sentenced to imprisonment. Regarding the feasibility of short-distance rides, he pointed out that there are advertisements in various places to encourage the use of short-distance routes, and the Transport Department will also devise feasible methods.
As for whether the $2 ride discount will be raised to $3? Sun Yuhan did not make a clear statement.
Before attending the Executive Council on the 23rd of last month, Chief Executive Lee Ka-chiu stated that in response to the possible abuse of the 2 yuan ride discount, relevant agencies were required to increase their efforts in law enforcement. The abuse referred to by the Chief Executive at that time was precisely the issue of illegal use of benefits by ineligible persons.
In 2022/23, the total amount of preferential subsidies for buses and light buses was 17.5 billion
In addition, the Secretary for Transport and Logistics, Mr Lam Sai-hung, in response to a written question from Hsia Wai-chuen, a member of the Architecture, Surveying and Town Planning sector, pointed out that under the "two-dollar concession" in 2018-19, the amount of government subsidy for buses was $5 million and for light buses was $15 million, and in 3/48, the subsidy for buses rose to $2022,23 million and for light buses to $11 million, totalling about $88.5 billion. The Bureau added that the "two-dollar hitchhiking offer" will be extended to persons aged 64 to 17 from the end of February 5.
Mr Lam said that television announcements, radio broadcasts and posters would be used to encourage concessionary users to take short-distance routes, thereby reducing the subsidized fare difference.
Government studies to combat abuse of $2 ride discount MTR and KMB say they have a ticket check and mechanism to deal with $2 ride discount|Chief Executive orders research to strengthen anti-abuse or increase special team inspections and increase fines for $2 ride|Cheung Ping-leung approves Lam Cheng government to lower the threshold to 60 years old and flip to 3 years old to be rash and advocate fine-tuning to $2 and $4000 bus discount|More than 2,9 suspected abuse cases revealed last year Ninety and a half involve MTR $25 ride discount|19.<> extended to <> estates and buses Members hope to cover more (with the whole Estate Bus line)