Freo Council puts Blue CAT on life support

After a marathon, more than two-hour debate, ending just after 10.15 pm tonight, 24 May 2023, a motion amending a recommendation before Fremantle City Council to cease contributing to the funding of the Blue CAT bus service was supported by all members of Council, save for City Ward Councillor, Adin Lang, and South Ward Councillor Marija Vujcic.

The Council voted to put the Blue CAT on life support until the end of September 2023 and to commence dealing with the State Government’s Public Transport Authority for a better deal for Fremantle.

Here are the final resolutions from last night’s Council meeting.

The Council

The third resolution is intended to be implemented only if dealings with the PTA fail.

Two other motions moved by Councillor Lang to engage University of Notre Dame Australia to in discussions to support the CAT bus service, and another to investigate e-scooter availability were lost.

Here are the terms of the lost motions.

The strong sense of the meeting, at which community representatives also spoke supporting the CAT bus service, was that the CAT bus service is important to Fremantle and it is time for the State Government to step up and fund wholly or in part the continuation of the CAT service in Fremantle.

As Councillor Pemberton tellingly pointed out close to the end of debate, if the $5,000,000 the State Government reportedly spent recently on the High Voltage music event were to be allocated to the CAT bus service in Freo, it would sustain the public transport service for the next five years, not just one Sunday afternoon a year with trucks circuiting around half the Blue CAT route.

It now remains to be seen if the State Government will shut down Fremantle’s CAT bus service by failing to provide adequate funding for its continuance.

* By Michael Barker, Editor, Fremantle Shipping News


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