Port Authority's Board of Directors last week voted to authorize a fare increase and 35-percent service reduction scheduled to go into effect later this year.
The Port Authority is legally obligated to balance its budget, and these actions are prompted by a $64 million deficit projected for the Fiscal Year 2013 operating budget.
Last week's vote is reversible. The vote authorizes Port Authority staff to begin preparing for the changes – writing new schedules, preparing for staffing reductions and a garage closure, and other actions. While staff must prepare for the worst, the service reductions may be scaled back or rescinded entirely if Port Authority's finances improve.
Base fare increase would go up 25 cents in Zone 1 from $2.25 to $2.50 and 50 cents in Zone from $3.25 to $3.50. There would be no increase in the cost of a transfer.
If nothing changes, the fare increase would go into effect on July 1 and the service reduction would go into effect September 2. Under the service reduction proposal, about 46 routes would be eliminated with service scaled back on all remaining routes. The ACCESS paratransit program would for the first time see deep cuts that would restrict transit options for persons with disabilities.
In the South Pittsburgh area, routes seeing service reductions include: 48 Arlington; 51 Carrick; 51L Carrick Limited; 54 North Side-Oakland-South Side, which will see the elimination of the Bon Air segment; and the Mon Incline.
All bus routes will end service at approximately 10 p.m., except for the 51 Carrick, 8 Perrysville, 16 Brighton, 27 Fairywood, 61B Braddock, 71A Negley, 71D Hamilton, 82 Lincoln, 86 Liberty, 91 Butler Street, G2 West Busway, P1 East Busway and Red Line.
Details on fare and service proposals are available at www.portauthority.org or by calling Customer Service at 412-442-2000 or the TTY number, 412-231-7007.