30 Jul 2014 – TODAY reported that only 12 companies signed up to the flexi-work pilot programme arrangements launched in October 2012 which allowed ‘participating organisations (to) benefit from expert advice on understanding employees’ concerns and opportunities with regard to more flexible work arrangements, reducing unnecessary business commuting, enabling flexibility for employees and realising potential productivity gains, and improving their overall transport efficiency’.
Now, with money spent and nothing to show for, LTA led by Josephine Teo (Minister of State, Transport) wants to dangle ‘cash grants for employers’ instead, achieve the same goals of adopting ‘flexi-work arrangements as well as encourage alternative modes of transport, such as cycling’.
Companies stand to reap ‘up to S$30,000 to engage approved consultants to conduct employee travel pattern studies and develop tailored action plans from Nov 1’ under the Travel Smart Network scheme.
More goodies can be had by way of ‘grants of up to S$160,000 annually, for up to three years, to… installing bicycle parking facilities or shower facilities at workplaces, or to pay for breakfast vouchers for staff.’
And ‘employees of companies that participate… can sign up for the corporate tier of a rewards programme, earning them more points than regular commuters for travelling during off-peak hours. The more points one has, the higher one’s chances of winning cash prizes awarded monthly by the Land Transport Authority.’
The scheme will be open initially to companies with more than 200 workers and which are based near MRT stations.
Maybe the SG government and civil service have never heard what we hear all the time in the private sector, are we throwing more good money after bad money? Or is this easy money (taxpayers’) for dead ideas?
And if we go by some of the other schemes (e.g. PIC, Productivity & Innovation Credit, scheme), is this yet another opportunity created for unscrupulous employers or managers to cream off public grants for private gratification?
To be fair, Mrs Jos Teo has never failed to mention that such schemes are all complementary and do not detract from the government aggressive increases to public transport capacity through new rail lines, additional trains and buses, as well as improved train and bus frequencies.
Even so, why is no one admitting to or at least publicly discussing the clear and present impact of overloading our previously First World’s public transport system with a liberal policy of allowing all kinds and unfettered numbers of foreign employees onto our trains and buses, not to mention competition for COEs for their top managers and spouses/children?
Are taxpayers daft to the extent that we pay our ministers and top civil servants top dollar to create public transport problems, throw S$1.1 bil for new buses and trains FOC to shareholders of listed companies and, now throw even more money to alleviate the overcrowding crunch?
Everything and anything they will do except take the overcrowding bull by the insanely liberal Foreign Talent policy horns and stop this madness, this stupidity? Without confronting THE truth, how can we expect to be set free from our transport woes?
Change we Must.
End PAP’s dominance or else PAP’s dominance will end us.