Public transport fine ‘unreasonably high’
Former students who secretly continue using their public transportation (OV) cards will have to pay a fine if they are caught. Between 12,000 and 15,000 former students still travel with the cards and ignore letters and warnings because the fines are cheaper than an ordinary OV card year subscription. The governing cabinet has therefore increased the fine from 194 euros to 300. However, ISO and LSVb feel that this amount is ‘unreasonably high’.
‘It is ridiculous that students be punished with a fine of 300 euros if they accidently forget to cancel their OV card on time’, says LSVb president Stefan Wirken.
Step by step
The student organisations want the fine, which brought in 25 million euros for the state last year, to be increased incrementally. ‘With incremental increases of the fine, students wouldn’t be directly confronted with an excessively high fine in the first few weeks’, says Linde de Nie from ISO.
In doing so, the student organisations feel that the ‘forgetful’ students wouldn’t be hit so hard and that travellers who consciously misuse their student travel card would be dealt with. They believe that an initial fine of 50 euros is reasonable, but if it is a case of prolonged misuse, then the fine could be increased to 300 euros,
Students who have to cancel their OV travel cards can only do this in person by using a machine at the station. Wirken: ‘It would be ideal if the OV student travel card were automatically cancelled once a student graduates. Then, all these fines would be unnecessary.’