|MTA plans on giving out free MetroCards to paratransit riders (259285)|
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MTA plans on giving out free MetroCards to paratransit riders
Posted by Gold_12th on Tue Apr 24 14:23:25 2012Access-Ride MetroCards
The MTA plans to give all Access-a-Ride-eligible riders free monthly MetroCards, a cost-cutting initiative that the agency hopes will save it more than $90 million a year by 2015.
The free MetroCards are intended to encourage many of the ill and disabled people who use the paratransit service to take buses and subways whenever possible.
They now pay the equivalent of a MetroCard swipe for a paratransit ride that costs the MTA an average of $66.
Many Access-a-Ride users, who must have some type of mobility disability to be eligible for the service, already use subway and buses in some instances, said Tom Charles, the MTAís vice president of paratransit.
Officials believe giving those riders, many of whom are elderly and on a fixed income, the MetroCards will shift some 15 percent of paratransit trips to subway or bus rides.
Itís especially crucial to cut costs on the program since the number of paratransit-eligible riders is expected to skyrocket as the population ages.