Brooklyn BP Adams 'deeply disappointed'
By Mary Frost
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority approved a fare hike on Thursday which will raise the base fare by a quarter, to $2.75, and the 30-Day Unlimited Ride MetroCard to $116.50.
Access-a-Ride Fare will increase to $2.75. The cost of the 7-Day Unlimited Ride MetroCard will increase to $31.
On the plus side, the bonus given to subway and bus riders will increase– from 5 percent with a $5 purchase, to 11 percent with a $5.50 purchase.
The fare increase takes effect on March 22.
MTA says the fare hike is needed to achieve a balanced budget for fiscal year 2015. The agency says an analysis concluded that the fare change “would not result in a disproportionate impact on either minority or below-poverty populations.”
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams disagrees. “I am deeply disappointed in the MTA’s decision to raise fares and tolls on hard-working Brooklynites, whose wallets are already stretched to their limits," he said in a statement late Thursday. "I understand the capital needs in the system, including dozens of unmet challenges and opportunities in Brooklyn, but it is my belief that the state’s surplus should be used to offset their deficit and related infrastructure needs, a belief I first espoused back in November when I boycotted the celebration of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge’s 50th anniversary.
"Additionally, Governor Cuomo should identify a sustainable funding stream for the MTA in his budget to meet the needs of growing ridership,” he added. “Local and state leaders should bring the MTA back to the drawing board to discuss this issue, and I would hope that Brooklyn’s needs would occupy a significant seat at the table where they discuss it.”
John Raskin, Executive Director of the grassroots organization Riders Alliance called the hike “a regressive way to fund a public service that the entire region relies on.”
"... The real scandal may be yet to come,” he said in a statement. “If Governor Cuomo and members of the legislature don't decide on new revenue sources to fund the MTA's five-year capital plan, larger fare increases are lurking around the corner.”
The board had considered another proposal which would have held the base fare to $2.50, but eliminated the bonus.
Express bus fare will also increase, as will commuter rail fares. Tolls for bridges and tunnels are also going up
E-ZPass rates remain substantially cheaper than cash tolls.
Updated at 5:45 p.m. with a statement from BP Eric Adams.