The first of eight public hearings to discuss the proposed fare hikes and crossing tolls is coming up on January 14th at the Hilton right here in Manhattan.
Are any of you planning on attending?
I have a meeting during the hearing, so I don’t think I will be able to make it. Wish I could.
If you are planning on attending, and you use Twitter, let SUBWAYblogger know by posting comment. You can find SUBWAYblogger on Twitter already. We’ll post a link to your Twitter feed for live updates from the hearing.
Maybe you plan on live blogging it…we’ll link to that too.
The MTA Board has officially approved the “doomsday” budget fare increases.
Fares will be increased and service will be cut in some areas.
The Daily News reports that things got a bit heated at the hearing.
Turns out it’s not just the homeless guys that pick up the tossed Metrocards to try and to use the leftover values.
The Post reports that Georgette DiFini, an F line resident of Brooklyn, regularly picks up discarded Metrocards. She claims that roughly 40% of all tossed cards have at least some money left on them. Not enough for a ride though.
You might be asking yourself how on earth would anyone be left with anything less than a whole dollar on their Metrocard. Well, it’s that tricky 15% bonus you get on any fare purchase over $7.00. If you get a $7 card, you’re going to get bonused $1.05. That damn $0.05 is going to carry over.
The MTA says simply refill your card to use the leftover bonus. So in this case, you’d have to add another $0.95 to cover the remaining balance of a $2.00 fare. It’s like the MTA is getting their ideas from the crack dealer’s handbook. Get just a little taste extra to keep them coming back. The $1.05 isn’t worth a damn thing. They’ll need to spend another $0.95 to be able to use it.
Anyway, this woman finds these cards everyday. How many you ask? Try around 45 a day!
The then takes her loot up to the tokenbooth to rollover the balance onto her card. She’s making about $10 a week she says.
Not a bad idea if you don’t mind fighting the bums for their finds.
What happens to all the “change” that never gets used? The MTA keeps it of course. That change adds up to about $4 million a year. That’s a $4 million donation New Yorkers make to the MTA a few cents at a time.
So here’s an idea that came to my mind. I’m sure I am not the first one to think of this, so I’m by no means trying to take credit. I’m just trying to initiate the discussion.
What if Metrocards were priced based on residency?
People living in the 5 boros would receive a significant discount on Metrocards while people from out of town would pay the higher rate.
Let’s assume that the price of all fares are going up. With that in mind, let’s make the out of towner rate a premium and residence get a break. Maybe the price of a monthly unlimited card goes up to just $90 for residence.
You could sell them like TransitCheks. Residents would simply receive their cards via mail or from their employers. Or maybe it is just one card that automatically gets renewed month to month. That way you would be able to verify who is a resident.
You could attach it to drivers liscences or ID cards even!
Just an idea.