Hernâni Dias told Lusa that the municipality decided to maintain the measure adopted during the covid-19 pandemic of placing the so-called Bragança Urban Transport Service (STUB) free of charge for the entire population.
"It will stay like this until we take a measure that reverses this decision, I think it should not happen, at least, while I am mayor it will continue," said the social-democratic mayor, who is serving his last term.
The municipality has its own network of routes within the city and between the city and the villages and for several years now it has been free for all students up to secondary education.
As explained by the mayor, during the pandemic period, and in view of the “difficulty of some families in using private transport”, the Chamber decided to extend free transport to everyone and, since then, tickets have never been charged at STUBs.
“It is also true that the public transport service is moving towards a trend of free transport and we are already, perhaps, a little further ahead than other municipalities in this matter”, he considered.
The mayor stressed that the objective is also that “public transport is also used, not only for the financial issue for the citizens themselves but also for environmental issues”, encouraging the use of public transport to contribute “to the preservation of the environment and the goals of the strategy to combat climate change”.
The measure, as he noted, “has some financial impact” which he did not specify and which he considered “not extremely relevant”, noting that “it is a measure of support for all families” in a municipality where, like the entire Trás-os-Montes region, the only public transport is the bus.
The mayor also underlined the support that this measure means for families, but also for the thousands of students at the Bragança polytechnic.