NJ Transit Riders Could Be Taking a “Hike”

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A decision to raise New Jersey Transit fares across the board could become a reality as soon as this May.

NJ Transit proposed a plan Friday to raise fares on the entire transit system due to the increasing budget deficit in the Garden State.

Newly appointed Gov. Chris Christie cut the budget for public transportation by 33 million to try and offset the growing state debt, according to BussinessWeek.

“The fare increase is going to be not insignificant," Executive Director James Weinstein, told NJ.com about the price increase.

In reality, the hit to Jersey riders' pockets could be significant to those who are already strapped for cash in the weakened economy. 

Currently rates range from $1.25 to $13.25 for a one-way trip -- the cost could go up to $1.50 to $16.50, according to a press release on the NJ Transit Web site.

A one-way ticket on the Newark or River line could jump from $1.35 to $1.70 with this new proposal, reported the Star-Ledger. That would still be lower than the metropolitan areas surrounding New Jersey.

Philadelphia’s fares start at $1.45 and New York’s regular fares are a whopping $2.25.

Th increase for riders on the nation’s third-largest public transit system would follow hikes of three significant hikes over the past eight years.

Not only could bus and train far be going up but service cuts could also happen. 

The proposals calls for cuts on the frequency of bus and rail lines and the wait time between buses and trains could range from five minutes to 20 minutes.

The final amount for these increases wasn't yet to be finalized.

There are 11 public forums scheduled around the N.J. so that officials could hear the opinions from the people who would be affected most, the transit riders. A complete list of where the hearings will be held can be found on the NJ Transit Web site.

Hopefully all of you in New Jersey  are prepared to hoof it because its looking like that will be the cheapest way to get to anywhere this summer.

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