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Tri-Met raises fares yet again

June 29, 2006

Last month Tri-Met’s board decided against raising fares yet again, but apparently has reconsidered and will be raising fares to $1.70 on September 1. It’s just a 5-cent increase, but the cost of catching the bus to work or school is becoming more and more expensive. At this point it costs MORE for me to ride the bus to my summer classes at PCC Sylvania from downtown rather than paying the $3 fee to park. It costs more for three people to catch the bus to work rather than carpool and pay for all-day parking downtown.

I can understand why it’s expensive for the buses to run. It’s a simple cause-and-effect of rising energy costs. I guess that the socialist in me believes that the community as a whole needs to bear the burden of things like public transportation, library books, feminine hygiene products, and some other things too…

But before I get off track, let’s just stick to the logic around the point that when it costs more to catch the bus than to drive one’s own car and pay for parking, something is wrong. People need incentives to get on the bus and take public transportation. If Tri-Met has to raise its prices every few months, pretty soon it’s going to cost more to ride a few miles to work than it costs to pay for one gallon of gas or diesel that will take someone up to 40 miles toward their destination. I know that the money to pay for public transportation has to come from somewhere…but knowing that the state budget subsidizes many non-vital programs, I can’t help but argue that the state should help subsidize public transportation to ensure it is affordable and give the public an incentive to get out of their cars and on the bus.

One Comment leave one →
  1. July 10, 2006 11:52 pm

    Okay, bus fare being subsidized seems a no-brainer.
    The reality for most people is that their time is too valuable to spend 3-5 times as long to arrive somewhere by riding the bus if they don’t have to. I tried riding the bus up to Seattle from the ‘burbs when I was in college. I could ride the bus for 1 1/2- 2 hours both ways or drive it in 30 minutes. Mind you that I had to start my car and drive my ass to the bus stop and back. Somehow it didn’t seem like the bus was a good idea.

    But really, I demand that you write your blog on “Why the public should Subsidize Feminine Hygeine products”. Come on, make me believe it!

    Actually you could do an interesting blog on all of the things that should be subsidized and all of the ones that should be taxed to pay for it. Okay, that’s two blogs, now. I’m going to bed while I wait for you to wrap those up…

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