Fare Hike? Make Your Voice Heard Tonight

Don't let your three minutes of testimony slip by

Got something to say to Metro about its proposed 10-cent emergency fare hike? Don't let your three minutes of testimony slip by.

Metro is giving everyone, except public officials, three whole minutes to say their peace at a public hearing at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at Metro headquarters at 600 Fifth Street, N.W. (And for those who get there 30 minutes early, Metro's also holding an open house.)

The transit agency is trying to close a $40 million budget gap which it says is "largely due to lower than expected ridership and passenger revenues... as a result of the economic recession." Specifically, Metro says it wants to hear your opinion on:

1) Possible cuts to the span of service on Metrorail, to include:

  • Opening rail system one hour later on Saturdays and Sundays
  • Opening rail system 30 minutes later on weekdays
  • Closing the rail system earlier

2) Comments on major restructuring of the following bus lines:

  • 16 Line Columbia Pike in Virginia
  • 80 Line North Capitol in the District of Columbia
  • 52, 53, 54 Line 14th Street in the District of Columbia
  • J1 Line Montgomery Mall – Silver Spring in Maryland
  • N2,4,6 Line Massachusetts Avenue in the District of Columbia

3) An increase on all Metrobus and Metrorail trips up to $.10 per trip:

  • The MetroAccess fare will be increased up to $.10 per trip. The cost of all pass products will be increased to account for this change. The increase is proposed to take effect on or about March 1, 2010 and will end on June 30, 2010.

4) Minor headway adjustments on Metrobus and Metrorail that will affect weekdays, Saturdays and Sundays covering both peak and non-peak service as well as shorter hours of the Metro Sales Office.

5) Closing of certain mezzanines on weeknights and weekends where alternate mezzanines at the same stations are available.

To register your comments publicly, send your name, address, telephone number and organization affiliation, if any, to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority's Office of the Secretary via fax at 202-962-1133 or e-mail: public-hearing-testimony@wmata.com.

There's a limit of one speaker per request; lists of individual speakers won't be accepted, per Metro. You should also reference Hearing Number 547.

Those who aren't registered can still speak, but they will have to wait until those who have registered have spoken first. Public officials will be heard first and will be allowed five minutes each to make their presentations.

Everyone else gets three minutes each. And in case you were thinking of being nice and giving up some of your speaking time to a friend or stranger, Metro says no, that's not allowed.

The Metro board plans to make a decision on the issue by January 28. 

Can't make it in person? Metro says written statements and exhibits may be sent to the Office of the Secretary, Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, 600 Fifth Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001, or e-mailed to public-hearing-testimony@wmata.com

Please reference Hearing Number 547. Submissions must be received by the close of tonight's hearing. 

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