1/07/2006

No More Fare Hikes!

The MBTA is floating another fare hike. If every time the T is in hock they can raise their fares, we can look forward to paying about a hundred and thirty bucks a trip by 2010. It’s not the answer, Dan.

If anyone reading agrees do two things:

1) write GM Daniel Grabauskas. His email is gm@mbta.com. Doesn’t matter that he doesn’t read his email. Send him a bunch with the subject line: “NO to fare hikes!” and tell him to take his fare hike and stick it up his ass. In so many words, of course. And then…

2) contact your local and state representatives (you can find their email addresses here–or if you do not know your local rep, go here, and once you have filled in the required fields and clicked the “find my election information,” scroll down to the “District Representatives” section, click on the appropriate link, and go from there), and demand that they LEGISLATE A FARE FREEZE, like the one that was in place all those years when we were paying 85¢ for the exact same sucky service(and it was not so long ago–up to 2003, when Governot Romney signed a bill into law allowing fare hikes).

#2 is actually the more important of the two points. Seems to me, this is about the only way to agitate for a cease-and-desist on fare hikes. Riders obviously can’t afford to boycott the T. They’ve got us by the balls, basically. That’s why the legislature should step in. And it is not inconceivable that they could do just that. After all, they have done so in the past.

A legislated fare freeze forces the MBTA to think outside the box instead of dipping into rider’s pockets every time they fuck up.

Feel free to post any other prescriptions you can think of. I’d appreciate hearing them.

1 Comments:

Blogger mmennonno said...

Here's a copy of the email I sent to State Senator Hart and Representative St. Fleur (it's not a work of literary brilliance but it gets the point across):

Dear...,

I have heard that the MBTA plans to raise fares again sometime in the next year. As someone who depends on the T as my primary source of transportation and is on a limited budget, I am opposed to what seems to be becoming a policy of annual fare hikes on the part of the T.

yes, the price of gas has gone up. But the fact is, the city has a vital interest in keeping the price of public transit affordable for all, but especially for the working class. Besides, people who use it *should* get a big break, because they are contributing not only to the livability of Boston, but to its viability as a real, working city. It's bad enough trying to get around by car with the T. It would be virtually impossible without it. And one way to encourage people to use it who do have an option is to keep it accessible and affordable for all.

In the past there have been periods when the legislature prohibited fare increases. I would like to know how to go about formally requesting that the legislature move to re-enact such legislation, at least for the time being. Otherwise we will be looking at significant increases at least once a year. And little incentive for T management to find long-term solutions for annual budget shortfalls.

I believe a freeze would force T management to seek out long-term money-saving solutions. It's no secret the T has wasted enormous amounts of money on more or less bogus contracts at inflated costs--from elevators and escalators to greenline trains that cost big bucks and don't work half the time. The T has awarded overpriced contracts to firms whose work has been subpar. When they do get a windfall they come up with idiotic, wasteful plans for it, like CCTV in subway stations. At the same time they have squandered opportunities to increase ad revenue. There are plenty of management (and union) issues that are costing the T big-time. They need to be addressed before any more fare increases are enacted.

I would appreciate your thoughts on the above, and whatever assistance you could provide in bringing this suggestion to the table.

Sincerely,...

9:26 AM  

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