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MTA Board Approves Fare And Toll Hike

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TWC News: MTA Board Approves Fare And Toll Hike
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The Metropolitan Transportation Authority approved its latest fare and toll hike proposal Wednesday morning.

The plan calls for raising the base subway and bus fare 25 cents to $2.50.

The proposed hikes brought out a procession of public speakers and featured discussion by board members, none of whom seemed happy about the prospect of higher prices.

The price of a 7-day MetroCard will now rise from $29 to $30, and a 30-day MetroCard would go up from $104 to $112.

The plan trims the pay-per-ride MetroCard bonus from 7 percent to 5 percent. Riders will get that bonus with any purchase of $5 or more.

Cash fare for express buses will rise from $5.50 to $6.

The seven-day Express Bus Plus MetroCard, which also covers subway and local bus fare, will increase from $50 to $55.

Tolls on MTA bridges and tunnels will also go up.

For instance, the E-ZPass toll on the Verrazano Bridge would increase to $10.66 and paying cash will cost $15.

Staten Islanders will pay $6.36 with an E-ZPass for their first two crossings. That toll drops to $6 for Staten Islanders who cross at least three times a month.

Tolls at other major crossings will go up by about 50 cents for E-ZPass users. Cash tolls will go up $1.

Most Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North fares will also rise as much as 9.3 percent.

Access-A-Ride fares will increase to $2.50.

Prior to the vote, a dozen members of the public pleaded to the board to vote down the fare increases.

"The fare hike, I say no. It's not fair to people. It's not fair to disabled people like that. It's not fair to the elderly. It's not fair to anybody, really," said one rider.

"The fact that we're talking about fare hikes in the midst of of one of the most devastating disasters the city has ever seen is actually disgusting," said another rider.

The changes take effect March 1.

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