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Monday, August 18, 2014

Talking Transportation: Another Fare Hike Likely

By Jim Cameron

Special to WestportNow

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but chances are we will see another fare hike on Metro-North in the coming months. Image

Not that any elected official would endorse such a plan (at least not before the November elections), but once again Connecticut is not totally in control of its financial destiny when it comes to our trains.

True, fare increases in Connecticut must be initiated by the state regardless of what New York does to its riders, but the financial numbers speak for themselves.

We are tied to New York’s operations by an antiquated contract going back 30 years. The cost of running “our” trains is born by both Connecticut and New York, and those costs are soaring from $70 million a year to $110 million thanks to remedial track work and expected contract settlements (with four years of retroactive pay hikes).

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