The subway fare is expected to increase this spring, but earlier today (Thursday, Jan. 24) the MTA decided to postpone voting until February’s meeting.
The decision to delay voting on the potential fare hike comes after the MTA held eight community hearings across the five boroughs to get feedback from commuters. The idea behind postponing is for members to use the time to look at alternative ways to raise money for the system. Governor Cuomo has vocalized that he is against subway fare hikes for commuters, and the MTA board in January’s meeting was in agreement that more time is needed to properly look into alternative plans.
For many commuters the idea of a fare hike with no visible improvements to the system is a primary cause of concern. According to CBS New York the head of the Finance Committee, Lawrence Schwartz, said:
“I can never support a fare increase unless there’s some kind of performance improvement metrics that insures the riders that they are going to continue to see, hopefully in the future, better service and more reliability.”
If no alternative is found, a fare hike of 4% is expected to go into effect in March. However, for those commuting longer distances, the fare hike will impact them twice. If, for instance, you are traveling from Long Island you with not only have to pay for the increase of the city’s subways, but also an increase on the LIRR. As noted in our previous coverage of the impending fare hike:
You can look into the details of each proposal here—for Metro-North, LIRR, and tolls—but the subway and bus fares will have two options for the public to choose between:
Currently, the base fare is $2.75 with a Bonus of 5% with the purchase of $5.50. Under the new fares the increase with either come from having no bonus and maintaining $2.75 ride fare, or raising the cost to $3 with a 10% bonus on $6 purchases.
Fingers crossed an alternative plan surfaces.
featured image source: Sakeeb Sabakka [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons