GoldenGateBridge-001.jpgPublic hearings are scheduled this week on proposed increases for the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District’s bus and ferry fares.

The fare increases will start July 1 if they are approved April 27 by the district’s board of directors.

The adult cash fares for all Golden Gate Transit regional bus rides and for regional bus routes within Marin County would have annual percentage increases.

Discounted bus fares for youth ages 6 to 18, seniors 65 and older and people with disabilities will remain discounted at 50 percent of the new adult cash fare rate.

Discounted bus fares for Clipper Card users will remain at 20 percent of the adult fare.

Clipper Card fares will not increase on the Golden Gate Ferry during the first year of the five-year fare increase program because those fares were raised Jan. 1.

Adult single ride fares on the Sausalito Ferry will increase by $1 in the first year of the five-year program starting July 1 and will increase 5 percent a year over the next four years.

Single adult ride fares will increase 5 percent annually starting July 1 on the Larkspur Ferry.

On both the Sausalito and Larkspur ferries, the discounted fare for youth ages 6-18 who use Clipper Cards, seniors 65 and older and people with disabilities will remain at 50 percent off of the new adult cash fare rate.

The special event ferry fare rate to AT&T Park will be the same as the Larkspur Ferry adult single ride fare, or $8.75, starting July 1 and will increase 5 percent each of the next four years.

The Port of San Francisco is imposing a 25-cent surcharge for each passenger boarding or alighting at the AT&T Park ferry dock, bridge district spokeswoman Mary Currie said.

The fare increases over five years will generate $2.6 million in additional revenue and the anticipated loss of ridership because of the fare increases is estimated at 1.8 percent, Currie said.

The district’s 2009 financial plan anticipated an $89 million budget shortfall over five years.
A public hearing on the proposed fare increases is scheduled for Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Whistlestop Wheels, 930 Tamalpais Ave. in San Rafael, and on Thursday at 9:30 a.m. in the bridge district’s Administration Building at the Golden Gate Bridge Toll Plaza in San Francisco.

James Lanaras, Bay City News

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