Metro fare hike proposal unpopular based on public comment feedb - New York News

Metro fare hike proposal unpopular based on public comment feedback

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WASHINGTON -

Metro's proposal to raise fares is proving very unpopular. After a series of public hearings and surveys, a large majority of people don't like it and some say they will use Metro less if the price goes up.

Metro's policy is to adjust fares every two years. This year's proposed budget includes increases across the board -- on bus, rail, Metro Access and parking.

And it's not hard to guess how people feel about that.

According to a report from Metro, 72 percent of the public comments at hearings and in writing opposed the fare increases. Only five percent supported it with the rest undecided.

In a survey of more than 6,000 people, one in five said they would significantly decrease how much they ride Metrorail if fares went up by the proposed three to four percent.

On buses, if prices climbed by a proposed quarter to $1.85, nearly one in three said they would use Metrobus less.

A large number of people also felt riders should pay less and the jurisdictions that fund Metro should pay more. They got half their wish.

On Wednesday, Maryland, Virginia and the District announced they would give Metro an additional $75 million.

“We've agreed in principal that the three jurisdictions will each, this year, put up $25 million so we can purchase more high capacity trains on Metro to obviously deal with all the issues with the tremendous growth we have with Metro,” said Va. Gov. Terry McAuliffe.

That money is specifically for the momentum plan and would not impact Metro's proposed fare increase. If the board approves, fares would not go up until July.

Read Metro's report here:

http://www.wmata.com/about_metro/board_of_directors/board_docs/022714_3AUpdateProposedFY2015BudgetandFareChanges.pdf

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