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MTA backpedals on 2015 fare hike plans

Posted by Gold_12th on Wed Apr 24 14:49:56 2013

MTA may scale back plans for a big fare hike in 2015, the agency’s interim chief said today.

The 2015 fare hike “may be not necessarily the full fare increase anticipated” in the MTA’s financial planning, Thomas Prendergast said.

Prendergast said he’s asked agency officials to look over their long-term plans to bring in another $500 million in fare money starting sometime in 2015.

Thanks partly to high ridership and a fare hike that took effect in March, the MTA is operating with a surplus. It’s also weighing how to spend an extra $40 million recently appropriated by Albany.

The extra money could go to more bus, subway and train service, or could go towards easing fares. “There is a relationship between fare increases and level of service,” Prendergast said.

But he wouldn’t commit to a plan one way or another, saying he and the MTA board will await ideas from their staff.

The March fare hike boosted the base bus and subway fare by 25 cents, to $2.50, raised prices for weekly and monthly passes, added a $1 fee for new MetroCards and reduced multi-fare discounts.

Fares were also boosted on Metro-North and the Long Island Rail Road, and tolls were boosted on MTA bridges and tunnels.

Prendergast, a longtime executive at the MTA and other transit agencies, is awaiting state Senate confirmation as the agency’s chairman and CEO.

- http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/mta_backpedal_on_fare_hike_plans_QtR6IasYee4s8bY9z6kVIJ


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