Strait Area Transit request for GPS units denied by council

ARICHAT: Richmond County has denied a funding request from Strait Area Transit (SAT).

During the regular monthly meeting on November 25 in Arichat, Richmond Municipal Council turned down a request from SAT for $2,100 to help purchase GPS units for its vehicles.

Noting that Richmond County did not budget for anything beyond their $100,000 annual contribution to SAT, Warden Brian Marchand said the money would have to come from the sundry account.

“There is money there for this,” Marchand told council.

District 4 councillor Gilbert Boucher does not agree with approving funding for GPS units. He said SAT receives “plenty” of money for the service they’re currently providing, and if they need more money, they should consider raising their fares.

“GPS is only good if you’re monitoring them,” Boucher noted. “We have GPS in this county and we haven’t monitored those GPS’s in five years. It was a big waste of money here, and I think it will be a big waste of money for SAT.”

District 1 councillor James Goyetche said he requested more information about the funding request and was told the GPS units would help monitor the speed of their vehicles.

“We pay $1.5 million for RCMP detachments to monitor speed,” Goyetche said. “We have insurance companies right now that do provide monitors in your cars and give you a 25 per cent discount if you follow the speed limit.”

Marchand received council approval to send a letter to SAT explaining their decision not to support the funding request.

“I’ll speak to the chair and I’ll express council’s feelings on that,” the warden added.