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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Higher ticket prices on tap in Oregon, Minnesota


Each September, the Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon (TriMet) increases fares 5 cents to offset general inflation. But this September, the agency will tack on another 20 cents to help cover increased fuel prices.

Adult cash fares will increase from $1.75 to $2 and monthly passes, from $65 to $75.

The agency’s fuel costs soared 67 percent (or $4.1 million) over budget during the current fiscal year, which ends June 30. For FY2009, TriMet will nearly double its fuel budget.

Meanwhile, the Twin Cities’ Metropolitan Council has proposed raising fares at all of its regional service providers, including Metro Transit, which operates the Hiawatha light-rail line.

The agency plans to hold public hearings next month on a two-phase fare hike proposal that calls for increasing ticket prices 25 cents beginning Oct. 1, and up to 50 cents more sometime in 2009. The increase will help offset rising fuel costs and lower-than-expected revenue from a motor vehicle sales tax, which helps pay for transit services, as well as a projected $15 million budget shortfall in the coming fiscal year.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 6/26/2008