Thu, March 26, 2009
World > Americas

New York increases transportation fares

2009-03-25 18:17:18 GMT2009-03-26 02:17:18 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Photo taken on March 25, 2009 shows the metro cards of New York City, the United States. (Xinhua/Gu Xinrong)

A passenger walks on the subway platform in New York, the United States, March 24, 2009. (Xinhua/Gu Xinrong)

Passengers take the subway train in New York, the United States, March 24, 2009. (Xinhua/Gu Xinrong)

Passengers buy metro tickets at the Grand Central Terminal in New York, the United States, March 24, 2009. (Xinhua/Shen Hong)

Passengers walk at the Grand Central Terminal in New York, the United States, March 24, 2009. (Xinhua/Shen Hong)

NEW YORK, March 25 (Xinhua) -- New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), which is a public benefit corporation responsible for public transportation in the state of New York, passed by a nearly unanimous vote Wednesday a so-called "doomsday plan" to raise fares, cut service and cut nearly 1,000 transit employees' jobs.

The board of the MTA voted Wednesday morning to enact a series of fare hikes and service cutbacks needed to keep the transit system from going broke.

The plan will reportedly affect millions of New Yorkers in the coming months, as base subway and bus fares will jump to 2.50 U.S. dollars. Seven-day passes will jump from 25 to 31 dollars, 14-day passes will increase from 47 dollars to 59 dollars and the cost of30-day MetroCards will rise from 81 dollars to 103 dollars.

According to New York TV channel NY1, the vote was broken largely into three parts: fare hikes, toll increases and service cutbacks. After hearing from the public and the board members, the board approved each by a vote of 12 to 1.

Tolls on MTA bridges and tunnels will rise, as will fares for commuter rail lines.

Some subway lines will be eliminated and others will be shortened.

Bus lines in all five boroughs will be cut and there will be cuts to the transit workforce, including the elimination of some station agents.

The subway and bus fare hikes would take effect on May 31.

The plan will reportedly help close the MTA's budget deficit, which is projected to be at least 1.2 billion dollars. The agency is required by law to pass a balanced budget.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Tuesday that New Yorkers should be "outraged," says NY1.

"When you see what's going to happen to your commuting costs, you should call your state legislators and say, 'I'm mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore,'" the mayor was quoted by NY1 as saying.

Transit riders also expressed displeasure Wednesday morning on the potential fare increases, according to NY1.

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