Two public hearings will be held in April by the SANDAG Transportation Committee to receive comment on a proposal to amend transit fares affecting the Metropolitan Transit System and North County Transit District service areas. Unless otherwise specified, all changes are proposed to become effective July 1, 2009.
The fare proposal is combined with a recent MTS decision to reduce non-peak services to overcome a $14.5 million budget deficit caused by the State of California’s elimination of State Transit Assistance funding for the next five years.
The public hearings will be held:
Wednesday April 15, 2009
NCTD Boardroom (Basement)
810 Mission Ave., Oceanside
Friday April 17, 2009
SANDAG 7th Floor Boardroom
401 B. St., San Diego
If you are unable to attend one of the public hearings you may e-mail comments to email@example.com, provide your comments by phone at (619) 699-1947, or fax them to (619) 699-1905. To submit comments in writing, send to Regional Fare Changes, SANDAG, 401 B Street, Suite 800, San Diego, CA 92101.
Specifics of the proposed changes include the following:
• Regional Pass, Senior/Disabled/Medicare Pass, and Youth Pass (Applies to MTS and NCTD): The Regional Pass allows unlimited use of MTS Bus, BREEZE, and SPRINTER services except COASTER, Premium Express, and Rural Buses for a calendar month or 30-day period. Consideration will be given to raising the price of a regular Regional Pass from $68 to $72. This also would raise the price of the Senior/Disabled/Medicare pass to $18, and the Youth Pass to $36. A 14-Day Regional Pass will be priced at 60 percent of the price of a Regional Pass ($43). As a result of raising the price of the Regional Pass, the price of college passes also will increase. The price for the College Monthly Pass will be 80 percent of the new price of a Regional Pass, and the Semester Pass will be based on 65 percent of the new price for a Regional Pass.
• Premium Express Pass (Applies to MTS and NCTD): The Premium Express Pass allows unlimited use of Premium Express, MTS Bus, BREEZE, and SPRINTER services except COASTER and Rural Buses for a calendar month or 30-day period. Consideration is being given to increasing the price of a regular Premium Express Pass from $90 to $100. This also would raise the Premium Senior/Disabled/Medicare pass from $22.50 to $25, and the Premium Express Youth Pass to $50. Consideration is being given to the creation of a regular 14-Day Premium Express Pass, priced at 60 percent ($60) of the cost of a regular 30-Day Premium Express Pass.
• Trolley Downtown Zone (Applies to MTS Trolley only): Currently there is a cash promotional fare for travel between any two Trolley stations from 12th and Imperial to County Center of $1.25 for adults and $0.60 for seniors. Consideration is being given to the elimination of this single-ride cash promotional fare. The standard Trolley single trips, Day Pass, 14-Day, and monthly/30-Day Pass prices would apply to all Trolley trips between 12th and Imperial and County Center.
• Community Circulator Fare (Applies to MTS only): Currently four routes on the MTS network are classified as Community Circulators and have single ride cash fares of $1. Consideration is being given to eliminating the Community Circulator fare category resulting in the single-trip cash fare on these services rising to the transit one-way fare of $2.25. This would not cause any changes to the cost of Day Passes, 14-Day, or Calendar Month/30-Day Passes.
• Region Plus Day Pass (Applies to MTS and NCTD): Consideration is being given to the creation of a new day pass valid for unlimited travel on all services operated by MTS and NCTD including the COASTER, but excluding two-zone rural bus trips. The proposed pass would replace the existing Premium Express Day Pass ($11) and be sold for $14.
• Compass Card Stored Value Default Fares (Applies to MTS and NCTD): Consideration is being given to setting the default fare for stored value payments on bus fareboxes and platform validators to be the price of the appropriate day pass. For all bus, BREEZE, Trolley, and SPRINTER services the default fare would be $5. For Premium Express and COASTER the default fare would be $14. For Seniors/Disabled/Medicare passengers on BREEZE and SPRINTER the default fare would be $2.25. For all other fares, passengers will need to advise the driver in advance of tapping a validator or before purchasing the product at a Ticket Vending Machine. These changes would be effective upon activation of the stored value feature of the Compass Card.
• Use of Regional Pass on Premium Express (Applies to MTS and NCTD): Consideration is being given to allowing passengers holding a valid Regional Monthly or 30-Day Pass to board a Premium Express bus with payment of a $2 supplement. This change would be effective January 1, 2010.
• Revisions to Juror Pass Program (Applies to MTS and NCTD): Consideration is being given to amending the language describing the Juror Pass program to allow the program to move to a limited-use Compass Card and to revise the price of passes being sold to the San Diego County Court system. The pass price changes will become effective upon signature of a new memorandum of understanding among all parties.
• BREEZE/SPRINTER College Pass (Applies to NCTD Only): Consideration is being given to extending the $10 discount on BREEZE/SPRINTER Passes to any secondary or post secondary institution in North County.