Since we're talking about Dan "the PR Man" Grabauskas, the Herald notes they have no idea what "hefty" means in terms of an actual increase in fares.
The T has raised fares between 25 to 27% every three years since 2001.
In a meeting with The Boston Globe's editorial staff, Grabauskas was quoted as saying:
"If you don't want to cut service, it's going to have to be hefty" unless the T finds some new source of money to patch its rising deficits, Daniel A. Grabauskas, general manager of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, said in a meeting with Globe editors, responding to questions about the possibility of a fare hike.
The Globe also noted that Dan could not define "hefty."
"The next fare increase, I don't know what that number would have to be, but it would have to be pretty substantial," Grabauskas said. A 25 percent increase would mean it would cost $2.50 to ride the subway and almost $1.90 to catch a bus.
Grabauskas spelled out two other alternatives: cuts in service, such as dropping bus routes or running trains less frequently, or state assistance with the agency's $8.2 billion in debt and interest payments.
Public transit advocacy groups are against the fare hikes.
Seriously - why can't the T at least manage within its budget? Did they really need to roll out WiFi? Do they need to have 65 odd vehicles for employees to commute to and from work?
"I don't think the T's problems are a great secret here," said Representative Joseph F. Wagner, a Chicopee Democrat who chairs the House's transportation committee. "It's going to require a lot of things. Fares may be part of a solution to a larger problem or set of problems. There are limits to what you can do with fares."
The Globe article noted that the T's fares are in line with the fares of other major transit systems in the US, including Chicago and Philadelphia.
In other news, today's Telegram & Gazette reports on the increase of parking fares at parking lots near Union Station. Effective yesterday, the two surface commuter lots parking rates doubled from $1.00 to $2.00. Commuters are not happy.
The article noted that the city of Worcester publicized the fare hike by leaving fliers on vehicles parked in the lots in June and again last week. The increase brings the Worcester lots in line with parking rates at the other MBTA stations.
Parking rates were increased because Worcester needs the revenue to make improvements to the outdoor lots.
Additionally, the city would like to see more commuters park in the new Union Station garage. A monthly pass brings daily parking at the Union Station garage in line with the $2.00 rate at the surface lots. It is hoped that once road work is completed on Grafton Street, enabling easy access, more people will park in the new garage. The garage sounds like it will be nice for the winter.