www.illinois.gov

Pat Quinn, Governor

State Links Skip to Content Skip to State Links

 Government
 Business
 Employment
 Education
 Health & Safety
 Family & Home
 Visiting
 About Illinois
 Illinois.gov

Stay Informed

Your Government


Illinois Flag Honors

Inspector General


 IGNN: State/All Press Release

ILLINOIS NEWS
The State of Illinois News page provides access to the Illinois Government News Network and all state press releases.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 31, 2008

Blagojevich administration and Madison County Transit officials launch first local program under new law that provides senior citizens free public transportation
Madison County Transit becomes the first transit agency under the new law to offer free public transportation to seniors; also includes free bus service for the disabled More than 30,000 seniors statewide have pre-registered for free transit

GRANITE CITY – Officials from Governor Blagojevich’s administration today joined local legislators and the Madison County Transit (MCT) agency to launch the first program to provide access to free public transportation for all seniors in Illinois since the Governor took action on the statewide transit funding plan.  The Madison County Transit board today approved implementation plans for a program that will begin offering seniors and the disabled free service starting Monday, February 4th.  Since the Governor launched a toll-free hotline and website for interested seniors last week, more than 30,000 senior citizens statewide have pre-registered for free transit service.
 
The new program allows all senior citizens to ride buses on the Madison County Transit system for free with an Illinois driver’s license or state-issued ID.  The program also provides free bus service to people with disabilities who are registered as paratransit-eligible – they just have to present their paratransit ID to the bus driver.  The free service for the disabled is limited to fixed route buses on the MCT system. 
 
“The MCT Board’s decision today is going to improve the quality of life for many deserving people,” said MCT Managing Director Jerry Kane.  “We’re grateful to the Governor and the hard-working members of the General Assembly who have made all of this possible.”
 
“I depend on MCT buses every day. I’m in a wheelchair, so I rely on these buses to take me everywhere I need to go. This free service will be very convenient and very helpful for people like myself,” said Jo Anne Giofre, a Collinsville senior and MCT bus rider.
 
Earlier this month, the General Assembly approved a long-term mass transit funding bill that included the Governor’s amendatory veto to require transit agencies statewide to allow senior citizens, aged 65 and older, to use main line and fixed route public transit service for free.  There are approximately 1.3 million seniors living in communities across Illinois that have mass transit service.  Under the new law, transit agencies statewide have until March 17 to implement their free ride programs for senior citizens. 
 
“Senior citizens will now have the ability to ride Madison County Transit free of charge. I am pleased we can offer this to seniors and provide them with some relief at a time when many, especially those on a fixed income, are struggling to afford health care or prescription drugs,” said Hoffman. “Having the option to stay mobile will allow seniors to remain active in their community and improve their quality of life.”
 
“Madison County is leading the way in Illinois.  My home county will be the first under this new law to offer free public transportation to all seniors with no exceptions,” said State Rep. Dan Beiser (D - Alton).  “They can now travel limitlessly and with ease.”
 
“I want to thank the Madison County Transit agency and the St. Clair Transit District for taking the initiative to get this done for our state’s senior citizens,” State Rep. Thomas Holbrook (Belleville – D).  “I continue to urge all seniors to sign up now in advance to receive this wonderful service.”
 
Blagojevich administration officials will travel throughout the state in the next few weeks to encourage seniors to pre-register for free transit service that will be available across the rest of the state in mid March.  Seniors should go online to www.illinois.gov/transit, or call 1-800-252-8966 or 1-800-447-4278. 


###

News Categories

 State/All
 Governor's Office
 Lt. Governor's Office
 Agriculture
 Budget/Fiscal
 Business
 Children/Families
 Culture
 Disabilities
 Economic Development
 Education
 Environment
 Flag Honors
 Health/Human Services
 History
 Infrastructure
 Opportunity Returns
 Recovery
 Safety/Security
 Technology
 Tourism/Recreation
 Transportation
 Workforce/Jobs

News Resources

 Search the News
 IIS Radio News
 RSS News Feeds
 e-News Subscriptions
 Communications Office
 Privacy Statement

Features

Sign up for an e-news subscription
Copyright © 2014 State of Illinois Site Map | Illinois Privacy Info | Kids Privacy | Web Accessibility | Contact Us