House Speaker: Avoid MBTA Fare Hikes

House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo says that fare hikes should be a last resort effort to close the MBTA's massive deficit in the upcoming budget, according to the Boston Herald.

The MBTA is required by law to have a new balanced budget every year. The financial board is determining what to do to overcome a $242 million deficit.

Officials on Friday said the hikes could be considered as a possible way to reach the goal of $40 million in additional revenue by fiscal year 2017. They have not yet specified how much of an increase they are considering, or when it would go into effect.

Critics say the hikes should only come after the transit agency shows improvement.
The agency is also moving forward with plans to lease more of its properties to private developers. State officials on Monday will discuss with 300 representatives from outside companies how they can rent out of advertise on property owned by the MBTA and other agencies.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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