CLEVELAND – The Board of Trustees of the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) today approved the following items at its regular meeting:
- A delay to the August 2018 fare increase
- Appropriations for the 2018 budget that call for NO additional service cuts.
- Provisions to establish a “Kids Ride Free All Summer” program that begins in June, 2018.
Regarding the decision to put the fare increase on hold, Joe Calabrese, RTA’s CEO and General Manager, said, “We need to take a look at the possibility of modifying our fare structure to best assure fairness and equity to our customers. It’s critical that we study if there is a way to join with community partners to offer lower fares for our customers with lower incomes.”
Calabrese said that transit systems across the country are reporting a drop in ridership due to reduced gas prices, reliance on Uber and Lyft and an increase in telecommuting. “But in Cleveland, while those factors have an impact, the biggest impact on loss of ridership is affordability among those with reduced incomes,” he said.
RTA will study the impact of increasing fares in Greater Cleveland over the next few months.
In addition, in order to give our riders more opportunities to provide feedback to RTA prior to making decisions about quarterly service changes, RTA officials announced it will hold quarterly public meetings. RTA staff will be on hand to receive input about all aspects of RTA’s services. The first set of meetings is scheduled for April 26 at noon and at 5:30 p.m. at RTA’s Main Office, 1240 West 6th St., Cleveland.