Public hearing tackles proposed HRT fare hike

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) – Hampton Roads Transit held a public hearing Saturday in Newport News to tackle a possible fare hike.

HRT is discussing raising prices by 50 cents. That would apply to bus, ferry, and light rail fees.

Many attended the meeting to voice their opinion. HRT customers told the rate hike is too much as many people who ride the bus are low income.

“They may need the money,” said Shelly Sinks. “I just hope that they get it from somewhere else. We don’t have it.”

William Harrell is President and CEO of HRT. He was at Saturday’s public hearing. Harrell said they don’t take the change lightly. But, the increase would bring in an additional $3 million a year.

“When you look at Hampton Roads Transit and other like transit properties, we really don’t have a dedicated funding source which gives you a level of service that we can be proud of,” said Harrell.

A hearing scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 29 was rescheduled for Saturday, Feb. 1. In February, the public will have the chance to speak directly to members of the board.

Any approved increases will go into effect in July.

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