While the MTA is still choosing which of four proposed subway fare-hike plans it will implement, the board's chairmain said that he is leaning toward increasing single rides to $2.50, while keeping hikes to 30-day cards minimal.
Chairman Joseph Lhota discussed the various options to raise subway and bus fares Monday on the John Gambling Show on WOR radio, where he noted that raising the single-ride fare would not only keep seven- and 30-day MetroCards fare increases low, but would also allow the MTA to keep the bonus on pay-per-ride cards, according to the New York Daily News.
Lhota noted at an event later on Monday that while he would make recommendations to the MTA board, the board would make the final call, according to the Daily News.
With the base fare increasing a quarter from $2.25 to $2.50, the seven-day MetroCard would be raised a dollar (to $30) and the 30-day pass would go up by $8 to $112.
This proposal would also keep the MetroCard bonus, which currently adds 70 cents for every $10 put on the pay-per-ride cards.
Lhota said keeping the seven- and 30-day fares low would help the middle class, the majority of whom use those plans rather than paying per ride.
The MTA will hold a public hearing in Brooklyn on Nov. 7, 5 p.m. at the Marriott Hotel in Downtown Brooklyn, and in Queens on Nov. 15 at the Sheraton LaGuardia.
The board will vote on a final budget and new rates in December, and the fare increases will likely take effect in March.
"We agree with Lhota that New York gets less government support than other major cities and look forward to his trying to change that unfairness," Gene Russianoff of the Straphangers Campaign told the Daily News. "The fare increase hearings are about three weeks away. It's now the riders’ chance to have their say."
New York City subway and bus riders aren’t the only ones that will feel the burn of fare hikes, though – Metro-North and Long Island Rail Road users will have to fork over 8.2 percent and 9.3 percent more, and at many of the MTA's bridges and tunnels drivers with E-ZPass will pay 50 cents more per toll, while cash payers would pay $1 more.