WASHINGTON (AP) — Metro is proposing to raise bus and rail fares by about 5 percent in an effort to overcome a $116 million shortfall in its upcoming operating budget.

Riders who use paper fare cards would see the biggest change under the proposal, paying a one-way flat fare of $6 during rush hour and $4 during off-peak hours. The proposal would also increase rail fares in rush-hour periods for those using SmarTrip cards, and bus fares would increase by a dime.

Metro General Manager Richard Sarles says “years of not spending enough money on maintenance” have hurt the system.

Sarles plans to present the proposed $1.6 million operating budget for fiscal 2013 to the board of directors on Thursday. If approved, most of the rate changes will take effect July 1.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

  1. KottaMan says:

    Having just watched a number of driver-cam videos from accidents, running red lights, etc.involving their buses, I suggest they implement a driver ed program. The clips I watched showed inexcusable wrecks including numerous rear-enders, backing into other vehicles in their own bus yard, hitting bicyclists and pedestrians, and general mayhem while on the streets.

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