Thursday, June 4, 2009

Breaking News ... Fare Increases of 15-20%

Again, I apologize for my lack of updates. I've been driving 2-3 days a week now because of my crazy schedule. I did take the p508 this morning, we were right on time to South Station at 8:23 AM.

Just saw this on ... not happy about it ... maybe driving will become permanent?

The state's transportation secretary announced today that fare increases of 15 percent to 20 percent would be necessary on the MBTA this fall, even if the Legislature comes through with an expected $160 million -- likely from a sales tax increase -- to help plug the current deficit.

James Aloisi announced the fare increase at today's meeting of the MBTA board and said the public process would begin soon. It will include a menu of additional options, he said, including a variety of service cuts.

"We need to have a multi-year solution," Aloisi said. He's hoping this fare increase will prevent another one from being necessary for at least two to three years.

The Legislature has been contemplating a variety of solutions to help the MBTA and the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, both of which are struggling financially. Officials had hope to avoid either a toll or fare increase by identifying another source of revenue.

Governor Deval Patrick has proposed a 19 cent increase in the gas tax, while the Legislature has proposed an increase in the state sales tax from 5 percent to 6.25 percent.