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MBTA Announces Plans For 6.3 Percent Rate Hike

BOSTON (AP) — Public transit riders in the Boston area would pay on average 6.3 percent more to ride buses, subways and trains under a fare hike proposal announced Monday by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority.

If approved by the MBTA's Fiscal and Management Control Board, the new fares would take effect July 1.

Read: MBTA Fare Hike Proposal

State law limits MBTA fare hikes to 7 percent within each two-year period. The last time they were raised was in 2016.

Under the plan , most CharlieCard holders would see local bus fares increase by 10 cents to $1.80, subway fares would rise 15 cents to $2.40 and the cost of a monthly pass would go up by $5.50 to $90.

Commuter rail prices would vary by region but the maximum increase for a one-way fare would be 75 cents.

While stopping just short of endorsing the overall plan, Republican Gov. Charlie Baker said the process the transit system was using to address fares was "appropriate" and designed to avoid hitting riders with steep increases such as the 23 percent average hike that occurred in 2012.

"The biggest and best thing the T can do to improve its performance and to get people to ride it is to do a better job of being reliable and dependable and predictable," Baker told reporters.

The transit system's biggest problem was chronic underinvestment in tracks, signals and other infrastructure, Baker said, noting the MBTA plans to spend $8 billion over the next 5 years on capital improvements.

A series of public meetings will be held next month before the control board takes a final vote on the fare proposal.

(© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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