It's official—the MTA says they won't hike fares up more than 4 percent in 2015. Note that another 4 percent hike will be coming our way in 2017, but most of New York will probably be operating on a sharing economy barter system by then, so you'll be able to trade your macrame iPod cozy for an F train ride.
MTA officials released their proposed 2015 budget yesterday, and they say they've settled on the lesser hikes they hinted at last year. Initially, biannual hikes of 7.5 percent were proposed, but now they're sticking with a 4 percent spike despite rising costs of labor; they'll be reallocating funds and dipping into reserves to help cover those costs. The agency expects its labor expenses to increase by about $260 million annually, thanks in part to new commuter services and maintenance projects, not to mention a deal with LIRR workers that helped narrowly avoid a strike earlier this month.
It's unclear how that increase will be distributed among single, weekly and monthly rides, but either way, straphangers are welcoming the promise of a smaller increase. "The Straphangers Campaign applauds the MTA’s commitment to keep transit fares down, as contained in its proposed 2015 budget," Gene Russianoff, president of the Straphangers Campaign, said in a statement yesterday. "We agree with the MTA. Enough is enough!"
Subway fares have increased three times since 2009, and last year single rides spiked up to $2.50, weekly MetroCards to $30 and 30-day unlimited cards to $112. Remember when we were whining about $76 monthlies?