BART board approves fare increase, other changes

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- If you're a BART rider, get ready to pay a little extra next year - fares are going up. And that's not the only thing that's changing.

BART is a way of life for many. But those rides are about to get more costly.

"They're finding every which way to charge people and I don't think that's fair," Concord resident Sharan Nacionales said.

Starting next year, BART will impose a 50-cent surcharge on paper tickets, all in an effort to raise revenue and push more people to use a Clipper card.

"That's a lot of money, especially when you're retired and you know, your income is set and any 50 cents counts," Oakdale resident Cookie Clark said.

Most riders aren't happy about it. "Knowing that if something's wrong with the ticket, I can bring it here and they'll adjust it for me, just things of that nature. But with Clipper, it's electronic and I don't know, I don't really want to mess with that," Concord resident Alaina Limbrick said.

Fares will go up 2.7 percent to account for inflation.

"If you're using BART regularly, getting a Clipper card isn't probably the worst thing you'll have to do and I don't see it as a huge inconvenience," Richmond resident Alex Bennett said.

Board members also voted to rescind the so-called "seat hog" ordinance, which was supposed to stop single riders from using more than one seat during commute hours.

The ordinance was approved last year but a plan to enforce it was never developed. "They're sick of people taking up three or four seats. Well we actually need to get to the root of the issue and figure out how to implement it and I'm happy to work on that policy," BART board member Leteefah Simon said.

Beginning in January, passengers under the age of 18 will receive a 50-percent discount. With the fare modifications, BART hopes to bring in an additional $4.1 million next year.

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