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Friday, February 21, 2020
Public Invited to Testify on 233% Bus Fare Hike
By News Release @ 4:02 AM :: 1778 Views :: Honolulu County, Rail, Cost of Living

News Release from Honolulu Rate Commission, February, 2020

The Honolulu Rate Commission is asking the public to weigh in on how much they think transit fares should cost.

Public testimony may be given at the following Rate Commission meetings:

  • Tuesday, March 3 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Kapolei Hale
  • Thursday, March 5 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Kailua District Park community room
  • Tuesday, March 10 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Mission Memorial Building meeting room

Written testimony may also be submitted to Howard “Puni” Chee at the following email address: hchee@honolulu.gov

Written testimony can be mailed to Howard “Puni” Chee at the following address:

Rate Commission, c/o Howard “Puni” Chee

Department of Transportation Services (C&C Honolulu)

650 South King Street, Second Floor, Honolulu, HI 96813

  *   *   *   *   *

Railroaded: City proposes Mind-Blowing 233% increase in bus fares

SA: … Seniors 65 and older, passengers with disabilities and riders holding Medicare cards would see the higher increases on a percentage basis. But commissioners pointed out that in reality, those in the newly clumped category would be paying a maximum of $60 annually, an increase of $25.

While not a baby step, “going from $35 to $60 is not that big of a step — it’s a, you know, teenage step,” said Rate Commissioner James Burke.

The commission voted 6-1 Tuesday to give a tentative OK to the plan. Commission Chairwoman Cheryl Soon said the commission could still make further changes based on the feedback it receives in the coming weeks.

“We may still tweak it one way or another,” she said.

Public meetings are scheduled for 6:30-8:30 p.m. March 3 at Kapolei Hale, March 5 at Kailua District Park Community Room and March 10 at the Mission Memorial Building next to Honolulu Hale. Written testimony will be accepted through March 10 by emailing hchee@honolulu.gov.

Broadly speaking, the plan calls for all single rides to go up 25 cents.

Another key component of the proposal is that it requires regular transit riders who want to receive discounts for their frequent travel to pay with recently introduced Holo cards, the reloadable electronic cards that work like prepaid debit cards. If using a Holo card, the plan proposes that a passenger be “capped,” or not charged, for more than 2.5 rides a day or 27 rides a month.

Under the latest draft, seniors, those with disabilities and those with Medicare cards would see a single ride move to $1.25, up from $1. A new $3 daily cap, which would use the new electronic Holo card to keep tally and then stop how much a passenger pays during a given day, would replace the existing $2 one-day pass program that allows passengers to catch as many rides as possible each day. That equates to a 50% increase…

Seniors, those with disabilities and those with Medicare cards who ride TheBus frequently could take advantage of what would be a $20 monthly cap, which would replace the existing monthly pass that now costs $6. That’s an increase of 233%. There would also be the $60 annual cap, which is a 71% increase over the current annual pass amount of $35…..

The basic adult single fare, for those 18 to 64, would rise to $3 from the current $2.75, about a 9% increase. A new $7.50 daily cap, which also would use the new electronic Holo card, would replace the existing $5.50 one-day pass program. That’s a 36% increase.

The proposal calls for an $80 monthly cap, a 14% increase over the current monthly pass rate of $70. Annual passes for adults, which now costs $770, would be eliminated entirely.

The single ride rate for youths (ages 5 to 17) would be $1.50, up 25 cents, or 20%, from the existing fare. The daily cap of $3.75 would replace the existing $2.50 daily pass, amounting to an increase of 50%.

The youth monthly pass would rise to $40, up 14% from the current $35. Annual passes, which now cost $385, would also be eliminated…

While the commission’s proposal calls for riders to pay more, it is projected to bring in less revenue than a recommended fare box recovery ratio policy of 25% to 30% of costs. So taxpayers would still be paying for more than 75% of TheBus operations. 

read … An Article Titled: 'City proposes moderate increases in bus fares'

Big Q: What do you think about the city’s proposal for a moderate increase in bus fares?

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