JIS News

President of the Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC), Patrick McIntosh has expressed optimism over recent developments involving the state owned bus company, which he said would advance its efforts to once again become a viable entity.
Speaking with JIS news, Mr. McIntosh said his optimism was based on a number of things such as the newly granted fare increase, strategies being implemented arising out of the series of town meetings, and a hope that costs would remain stable.
However, he said note had to be made of the fact that the cost of inputs such as oil was increasing and were expected to continue doing so. In relation to this, the JUTC head said there was need for a recognised mechanism that would accommodate a structured adjustment in bus fare.
He pointed to the Price Adjustment Mechanism (PAM) used by utility companies such as the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) and the National Water Commission (NWC), that allows a structured adjustment in tariff to make up for increases in the basic units used to provide the service to commuters.
Just days ago the company was granted a fare increase to offset losses being suffered by the company and which could have had a significant negative impact on the service provided to the public.
He said further that the PAM would, “accommodate increases in oil prices, spare parts, adverse changes in the country’s exchange rate, which would affect overseas purchasing agreements.so to the extent that all things remain the same, yes we do expect to be in a more favourable position,” he noted.
Mr. McIntosh indicated that the implementation of a PAM for the JUTC would not happen in the near future as the Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) was in the process of “working out” the request.
He explained that the PAM would work by the use of a set trigger points based on the prices of various inputs reaching a certain level, which would then prompt a review. He stressed that while this would not occur every month, “it must be something that should be looked at”.