WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. – The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) approved fare hikes Wednesday that will include increases for Metro-North riders.
The system-wide move, which includes New York City buses and subways, was made in order to close a $450 million deficit. The increases go into effect on March 1, 2013.
MTA Chair and CEO Joseph Lhota said in October that the fare and toll increases were necessary due to rising costs for “debt service, pensions, energy, paratransit and employee and retiree health care,” which the MTA does not control.
Most of the increases are between 8.19 percent and 9.13 percent, according to Metro-North.
For example, a one-way peak ticket from White Plains, Scarsdale, Hartsdale, Hastings, Dobbs Ferry, Ardsley and Irvington to Grand Central Station will go from $10.50 to $11.25, an increase of 7.14 percent. A one-way off-peak ticket will go from $7.75 to $8.50, an increase of 9.68 percent. A monthly ticket will increase 8.73 percent, from $229 to $249.
The increases will be even steeper for commuters from Mount Kisco, Bedford Hills, Katonah, Cortlandt, Goldens Bridge and Peekskill. A one-way peak ticket from those communities to Grand Central Station will cost $14.50, an 8.77 percent increase from the current $14.25. A one-way off peak ticket would cost $11.75, a 9.30 percent increase from the current $10.75. A monthly ticket would cost $343, an 8.89 percent increase from the current $315.
There were eight public hearings on the fare increases in November and December. Westchester County resident Barry Adler questioned the MTA board at a November meeting.
Adler asked at the meeting , "How do you justify that fare?"
He will now pay $11.25 for a one-way peak ticket from White Plains to Grand Central, up from $10.75.