Chicago Sun-Times

Metra threatening consecutive fare increases over next three years

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Metra unveiled its proposed budget for next year, which involves raising fares by at least 5 percent in 2008, followed by 10 percent increases in 2009 and 2010, if the General Assembly doesn't come through with new funding.

The agency has a $40 million deficit for next year.

You can read more about it in tomorrow's Sun-Times, but here are the basics of what Metra's board is considering:

Metra riders face one of two doomsday scenarios.

One plan would increase fares by 10 percent next year, eliminate the $5 weekend fare program and
create a new $7 all-day fare for Saturday and Sunday riders. Metra would also shrink its administrative
staff by 100 positions and eliminate some janitorial and coach cleaning services, Executive Director Phil
Pagano said.

The second option would be to raise fares by 5 percent in 2008, but all Sunday service would be cut. Weekend fares would be $7 on Saturdays.

With either plan, riders would be hit with 10 percent fare increases in 2009 and 2010.

Thoughts?

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4 Comments

How is it that certain UP employees can ride for free and everyone else has to pay full rate? Airlines get to ride at a discounted rate why can't UP employees?

Anne, at this point, all of it is being spent. There's nothing left to save.

I just have one question, since this is a mostly cash business, how much of the cash being paid for fares isn't making it to the bank but ending up in peoples pockets?

Everyone is paying more for transportion; transit users should not be given a free ride at the expense of those who do not use it. Cutting the overhead is good; we already pay the RTA tax, unfair to motorists; they should however consider a subsidy or reduced fare for the handicapped, blind, and others who are unable to drive and have no alternative; for those I feel truely sorry. Those who take mass transit by choice should pay for it as I pay for my gas and tolls by choice.

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This page contains a single entry by Monifa Thomas published on October 25, 2007 8:54 PM.

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