MBTA Board Approves 9.22 Percent Fare Hike

Proposed increases have ranged from 5 percent to nearly 10 percent

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority's control board has voted to raise fares on the public transportation system an average 9.2 percent beginning July 1.

The vote came after protesters shut down the board's meeting for about a half an hour on Monday.

The actual vote was drowned out by protesters' chants and cries. An MBTA spokesman later confirmed the vote was taken.

Proposed increases had ranged from 5 percent to nearly 10 percent.

MBTA officials say the hikes are needed as the system struggles with annual operating deficits and an estimated $7.3 billion backlog of deferred maintenance.

T officials have reported progress in cutting overtime and other administrative costs.

Many riders argued at a series of public hearings the T should not ask customers to pay more until service improves.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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