BART fares to increase in new year, regressively as ever
- Published Wednesday, December 21, 2005, by Bay City News
BART prepares to raise fares by 3.7 percent
Bay Area Rapid Transit fares will increase by 3.7 percent on Jan. 1,
according to BART officials.
In addition to the fare hike, BART has tacked on a [BATN: highly
regressive] 10-cent surcharge to ticket prices for trips made within
Alameda, Contra Costa and San Francisco counties, including Daly City.
On top of that, SamTrans will add a 10-cent surcharge to rides that
begin and end in San Mateo County and for trips between the five San
Francisco International Airport extension stations and San Francisco
BART stations. The five SFO extension stations are in Colma, South
San Francisco, San Bruno, SFO and Millbrae.
According to a Tuesday news release, the new minimum BART fare will
increase from $1.25 to $1.40.
[BATN: In other words, ALL intra-San Francisco or intra-Oakland trips
-- the ones which cost BART the least to provide, are the most
efficient use of BART's expensive infrastructure and rolling stock,
and which use the oldest and most depreciated parts of the BART system
-- will see fare increases of 12%, while longer-distance and generally
wealthier exurban riders -- who solely benefit from but largely do not
pay for BART's gargantuan parking infrastructure, and who solely use
the spectacularly expensive and ruinously loss-making BART extensions
of the last decade -- will see smaller comparative fare increases.]
This is the first BART fare hike in two years, but BART spokesman Jim
Allison said the new increase has been in the works for quite a while.
The nine-member BART board of directors approved tying fare increases
to the Consumer Price Index on May 22, 2003, Allison said.
The increases are expected to generate $4.3 to $4.4 million between
January and July 2006, when this fiscal year ends, Allison said.
The revenue generated by the fare increases will go into BART's
general fund to finance capital and operating expenses, which have
gone up in the past year, Allison said. BART employees won't receive
any raises as a result of the increased revenue. Employee salary
increases were last implemented in July 2004, Allison said.
BART's budget for the 2005-06 fiscal year is $500.4 million.
BART has also announced that the price for discounted senior, disabled
and youth tickets will go up from $6 to $9 beginning Jan. 1. The
discounted tickets, called "Green" tickets for people 65 years and
older, and "Red" tickets for children ages 5 to 12 and people with
certain disabilities, will retain a value of $24, giving those riders
$24 worth of BART trips for $9.
The price increase for green and red tickets cuts the discount from 75
percent to 62.5 percent off regular BART fares.
According to a BART news release, the 62.5 percent discount for
seniors, disabled riders and youth remains among the highest transit
In addition, a 6.25 percent discount for tickets valued at $48 and $64
will remain. Those tickets can be purchased for $45 and $60
respectively, giving riders a discount of $3 and $4.
Green and red tickets purchased for $6 before Jan. 1 will remain valid
after the New Year.
[BATN: BART press release: