Trickle down

High fuel prices + lots more riders = a major budget shortfall, and hence, Ron Sims is proposing another 25-cent fare increase.

With Metro Transit ridership and diesel fuel prices at record levels, King County Executive Ron Sims on July 3, 2008 announced he will preserve current service and continue delivering new service by proposing a 25-cent fare increase. Sims opted for the proposed increase rather than cut service to pay for fuel costs that have skyrocketed over 60 percent this year alone.

“This worldwide fuel crisis comes at a time of historic ridership growth for Metro Transit–and is the reason why residents are turning to transit in record numbers as their own budgets are squeezed,” Sims said. “But the same rising fuel costs contributing to Metro’s popularity are making it more expensive to deliver service and maintain aggressive transit-growth plans.

If the Council approves the proposal, it will take effect on October 1st.

I don’t have much to say about this, except–yet again–that it’s time to get serious about finding creative, progressive ways (other than fares and sales taxes, please) to increase funding for transit. We said we wanted folks to ride, right?

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