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Leduc County leaves Regional Transit Services Commission

Click to play video: 'Leduc County pulls out of Regional Transit Service Commission' Leduc County pulls out of Regional Transit Service Commission
WATCH ABOVE: A commission dedicated to connecting Edmonton and surrounding municipalities through transit is shrinking, after Leduc County decided to pull out. Sarah Komadina has more – May 6, 2020

Leduc County will no longer be part of the Regional Transit Services Commission.

Plans to join the partnership started in 2017, with the idea of delivering more transit options for riders throughout the entire Metro Edmonton region.

Originally, 13 municipalities were wanting to be part of this, but now that number is down to 10. Sturgeon County voted to transition it’s role to an advisory membership and Strathcona County voted against joining in February.

Edmonton city councillor Michael Walters indicated another municipality is also turning away from the commission but did not specify which one. 

READ MORE: Edmonton and St. Albert agree to next steps in creating metro transit commission

Leduc County council made the decision to withdraw after reviewing details like the commission’s voting structure, routing costs and pace of the project. Staying would have cost the county a base fee of $80,000, and it would also be on the hook for 1.7 per cent of the commission’s total operating costs.

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“We decided, as a council, that we could not justify the financial and decision-making impacts that joining the RTSC would have on Leduc County and its residents,” said Leduc County mayor Tanni Doblanko.

“We might not be interested right now, but as it grows [and] as it gets implemented, Leduc County will always be interested in regional projects and regional support.”

Walters said he is perplexed about Leduc County’s decision.

“They are not a big transit player today, we collaborate with them around the airport and [Route] 747,” he said. “They are our neighbour [and] we have a good relationship with them overall on many issues. It’s disappointing.”

READ MORE: Regional transit plan rolls forward: Leduc, Devon, Beaumont, Morinville and Stony Plain vote to join

The next step for the commission is to send a proposal to the Alberta government to have it formally established in provincial regulations. The hope is that the first phase of the service will start next year.

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