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The Baguio City Council passed a resolution requesting the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to amend the agency’s circular on student fare discount to include Saturdays, Sundays and the holidays.

Lawyer Brenner Bengwayan, city secretary on Tuesday said the proposal was introduced by Scout Official For A Day (SOFAD) councilor Jessa Lei Junio in October 2016, and made its round in actual council sessions until recommended for approval by the Council Committee on Public Utilities, Traffic and Transport Legislation chaired by councilor Benny Bomogao.

The approved resolution provides that students officially enrolled in both private and public schools should be granted similar benefits and privileges like the Senior Citizens (SCs) and Persons With Disabilities (PWDs).

The 20 percent fare discount accorded to students must not only be limited to school days but also on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays because they are still students on the said days.

Under the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) policy, the 20 percent student fare discount shall only be applicable to students who are enrolled in private and public education institutions only during school days.

In the resolution’s explanatory clause, most students still rely on their parents for their school fees and allowances thus including Saturdays, Sundays and holidays in the coverage of the 20 percent student fare discount will be a great help.

The City Council is optimistic that the approved resolution will get the support of other city, municipal councils and provincial boards in different parts of the country to show that there is an urgent and popular demand for the national government to review its policy to make it beneficial to the greater majority of the people.

In 2015, Senate Bill (SB) 203 seeks to implement the 20 percent student fare discount during the entire school year for elementary and secondary students; during the regular semesters for college students and during the duration of a course for vocational or technical students, including Saturdays, Sundays, Holidays, and Christmas vacations. SB 203 is still pending in the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture. (PNA) FPV/JBL