Central Mass. lawmakers oppose commuter rail fare hike
Say size of increase is too high for riders from Worcester area
FIFTEEN CENTRAL MASSACHUSETTS lawmakers are asking transportation officials to scrap a proposed increase in commuter rail fares, saying it will “result in a disparate financial burden” on people in their part of the state.
The MBTA on Jan. 28 announced a proposal to raise more than $32 million in new revenues by hiking bus, subway, and commuter rail fares an average 6.3 percent in July.
Under the plan, a one-way ticket from Worcester to Boston would go up by 75 cents to $12.25. “While the proposed increases may be in line with the rate of inflation in the Boston area, this rate does not apply to a gateway city such as Worcester,” the lawmakers wrote in a letter to MBTA Fiscal and Management Control Board Chairman Joseph Aiello.
The letter said Zone 8 commuter rail riders — like those who travel between Worcester and Boston — would pay $25 more per month, for a $388 monthly pass, while MBTA riders who use monthly LinkPass for bus and subway trips closer to Boston would pay an additional $5.50 monthly.
They also asked the T to hold a hearing in Worcester before the Feb. 28 public comment deadline to hear the “often-overlooked voices of riders outside of the Greater Boston area.”