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75% Vote for Free Public Transit in Tallinn Referendum

Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

A week-long referendum on free public transit conducted among Tallinn residents ended on Sunday with 75.5 percent of participants voting in favor of the idea.

The Tallinn City Government has been heavily promoting its plan to provide free rides on city-operated bus, trolley and tram lines to registered city residents as of 2013, and had organized the referendum, it said, in order to put the matter to the voters.

In total, 68,059 people, or 20 percent of the city's voting-age population, took part in the referendum, City Secretary Toomas Sepp said at a March 25 press conference.

As many as 40 polling stations were set up in shopping malls, youth centers and community centers throughout the city for the event, said Sepp. Residents of the Lasnamäe District participated most actively in the referendum, while those of Pirita District were most passive, he said.

Tallinn Mayor and Centre Party Chairman Edgar Savisaar said at the conference that the people had spoken and the city would execute the wish of the majority.

ERR reported earlier that in order to launch its free public transportation scheme, the city would have to find an additional 20 million euros, equivalent to approximately 40 percent of its current public transportation budget.


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