BP Urges Disabled Residents In Western Queens: Use Taxi Smart Card Program
Queens Borough President Helen Marshall urged, Thursday, February 14th that disabled residents in western Queens make use of a pilot program that allows them to use a pre-loaded Taxi Smart Card as an alternative to Access-a-Ride.
Using the Smart Card, eligible participants can have access to funds that can be used for the fare in yellow taxicabs and livery car services. The card program is the result of a collaboration between the City Department for the Aging (DFTA) and the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities (MOPD).
The card can be used by disabled residents for transportation to doctor appointments, visits to relatives or friends, supermarkets or shopping centers. And, it can also be used nights and weekends and for trips not on MTA Transit or Access-a-Ride routes.
Marshall said that right now the program is being tested right here in Queens’ Community Board 1, which includes Astoria, Long island City and parts of Woodside. The program, which could be expanded at a later date, is also available in the Canarsie/Flatlands section of Brooklyn.
Under the program, enrollees contribute $12.50 towards the purchase of the card and the city contributes $87.50. Each participant can reload the card four more times at a cost of $12.50 each time for a maximum benefit of $437.50.
“I urge disabled residents to make use of this pilot program with the hope that it will be expanded to include many more disabled residents,” said Marshall, adding that participants can make their $12.50 contributions with a money order.
Shel said that anyone who wants more information about the program, funded through federal transportation dollars, can call DFTA at (212) 442-3026 or MOPD at (212) 788-2830.