January 22, 2015 / 6:01 PM / 3 years ago

New York City subway, bus fares to increase

NEW YORK, Jan 22 (Reuters) - New York City's Metropolitan Transportation Authority voted on Thursday to increase subway and bus fares on the nation's largest mass transit system in March.

The cost of riding a subway or bus will increase to $2.75 from $2.50 and riders will get an 11 percent bonus by putting $5.50 or more on a Metrocard, which is used for access to the system, the MTA said.

The price of a 30-day unlimited Metrocard, often used by daily commuters, will increase to $116.50 from $112, it said.

Railroad fares and tolls on the city's bridges and tunnels will increase as well, effective March 22.

The increases will help maintain reliability and security for the transit system and its passengers, MTA Chairman Thomas Prendergast said at a news conference.

"They know if they go downstairs to catch a train, they can catch a train," he said.

The Riders Alliance, an advocacy group, said Governor Andrew Cuomo and the state legislature must find sources of revenue other than fare hikes to fund the MTA's capital needs.

"Paying for public transit with fare hikes is a regressive way to fund a public service that the entire region relies on," said John Raskin, executive director of the Riders Alliance, in a statement.

The MTA says more than 9 million people use the subways, buses, trains, bridges and tunnels each day. (Reporting by Ellen Wulfhorst; Editing by Bill Trott)

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