TriMet plans to phase-in LIFT fare increases
Fare increases for using TriMet's LIFT service will be considered by the regional transit agency's board of directors at its June 21 meeting.
The increases for using the door-to-door system for those physically unable to use regular buses and trains are intended to partially offset higher operating costs, including increasing fuel prices.
The board will vote on the increases at its July 27 meeting.
The proposed increases are scheduled to be phased in during the next four years. They would take effect every Jan. 1 until 2015.
The proposal would ultimately increase LIFT cash fares from $1.85 to $3; 10 pre-paid ticket from 18.50 to $30; monthly passes from $52 to $92; half-monthly passes from $27 to $46; annual passes from $624 to $1,104; 20-trip punch cards from $37 to $58; and transfers from 85 cents to $2.
In addition, a 14-day pass would be repealed as of Jan. 1, 2012.
Honored Citizen cash and monthly pass fares are not affected and would remain at $1 and $26 respectively through Jan. 1, 2014.
The LIFT program was started in 1990 to comply with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act. It requires nondiscriminatory access to fixed route transit service, with complimentary paratransit service acting as a 'safety net' for people cannot use regular buses and trains.
Under the law, ADA-required paratransit fares can be double fixed route fares.
Both current and proposed LIFT fares only pay a small percent of the service. According to TriMet, LIFT rides cost the $28.62 compared to $2.51 for fixed-route rides.
The total cost of the LIFT service is $31 million, with higher fuel costs accounting for about $5 million of the budget.