The Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced plans this morning to increase fares and tolls by 8.2 percent to 9.3 percent to “raise additional, vitally needed revenue” for the vast system. The MTA is holding a series of eight public hearings on the proposal next month in New York City, Long Island and Westchester and Orange counties. Commuters can make video-taped statements at a number of MTA facilities. The new prices would take effect on or about March 1, 2013.
Most tickets on the Metro-North Railroad and Long Island Railroad would increase 8.2 percent to 9.3 percent. Rides on those lines are based on distance traveled, with discounts for traveling during off-peak times. More information is available on the MTA website.
The proposed hikes come “during an era of successful and unprecedented MTA management actions to cut controllable expenses,” the MTA said. The authority will spend less this year than in 2011, and year over year “controllable” costs are 0.3 percent less. Uncontrollable costs, such as pensions, are another story.
“Costs that the MTA does not exercise control over, namely those for debt service, pensions, energy, paratransit, and employee and retiree health care, continue to increase beyond the rate of inflation,” MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph J. Lhota said in a statement. “We are grappling with long-term measures to reduce these frustrating and difficult non-discretionary expenses, but today, they are the drivers of the need for a fare and toll increase.”
The proposals are subject to change after the public review process. The Westchester hearing will take place from 5-9 p.m. Nov. 15 at the Yonkers Public Library, Riverfront Library Auditorium, 1 Larkin Center, Yonkers. There are several stations where riders can make videotaped statements. Written statements can be submitted to MTA Government Affairs, 347 Madison Ave., 5th Floor, New York, NY 10017.
The MTA board will vote on the toll and fare hikes at its Dec. 19 meeting. The MTA service area includes New York City and the following counties: Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, Dutchess, Orange, Nassau and Suffolk.
Following are details of the proposed fare and toll increases, broken down by each MTA service.
New York City Subway and local buses: