Revised Fare Hikes Could Spare Bus Riders

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STATE – After listening to public input at a series of hearings last month, New Jersey Transit is considering an increase of just ten percent on certain bus and light rail fares, instead of the 25 percent hike in had originally proposed.

Some bus routes slated for elimination could be spared under the new plan, including two that serve East Brunswick.

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Rail riders still face the original 25 percent fare hike. The off-peak discount program would still be eliminated, meaning that the 17 percent of riders who utilize it would be facing an even steeper hike. An off-peak round trip ticket between Rahway and New York currently costs $12.25; if the fare hike plan is approved, the same trip would cost $17.50 on May 1.

“The modified proposal seeks to minimize the impact of fare changes and service reductions on the most vulnerable riders-low-income riders, students, seniors, and customers with disabilities,” NJ Transit Executive Director James Weinstein said.

“This is a small step in the right direction for bus riders, but this remains a tax increase by another name for mass transit riders who have no choice but to use NJ Transit daily to get to work,” said Assembly Transportation Committee Chairman John S. Wisniewski (D-Middlesex).

“I remain unconvinced that Gov. Christie has done enough to cut costs and patronage before passing on this massive fare hike to working class New Jerseyans.”


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