MTA seeks to increase fares by 4 percent

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The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is pushing forward with plans to increase fares next year.

MTA Chairman Joe Lhota proposed two 4 percent fare hikes during a board meeting Wednesday, with one taking place in 2019, and the other in 2021.
MTA officials say the hikes are necessary to stave off budget deficits and decreased ridership.

The New York Daily News reports subway and bus ridership dropped by 7.7 million weekday passengers in May compared to the same time last year. The agency is expected to see a $376 million decrease in fare revenue between 2019 and 2022.

Lhota says the transit system is experiencing a nationwide trend of fewer riders. He says it's due to a combination of service, for-hire vehicles and fare evasion.

For those who travel on the Hudson Line and commute from Tarrytown to Grand Central, a one-way peak ticket currently costs $14 . That will jump 56 cents a day next year, or an extra $12 for a monthly pass.

Regular Metro-North commuters say they do expect fare hikes to come every once in a while, but some wonder how the fare hikes stack up against other major cities.

News 12 crunched the numbers and it turns out NJ Transit's highest fare in 2018 was a one-way ticket to Mahwah or Suffern at $14 - the same as the current Metro-North fare from Tarrytown to Grand Central. In Philadelphia, the highest fare to Philadelphia International Airport from their 30th Street station was only $8 one way during peak times.

The MTA says the specifics of the increase won't be made public until fall at the earliest.

AP Wire Services contributed to this report.

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