A trip on Gwinnett County Transit will soon cost more.
The fare increase, the first since August of 2008, is being implemented to meet Gwinnett County's goal that fares cover “about a third” of the entire cost to provide bus service, according to a county press release. The remainder of the cost is covered by taxpayer-funded federal and state subsidies.
Citing increased costs to operate, maintain and fuel buses, Gwinnett Transit Director Phil Boyd explained some of the expense must be passed to transit customers.
Officials hope the roughly 25 percent fare increase will eliminate the need to make cuts to transit service that would burden customers.
“Gwinnett County Transit will continue to monitor ridership and make minor service adjustments as necessary to maintain cost-effective operations,” the release stated.
According to Gwinnett County’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report for the year ending Dec. 31, 2010, the local transit operating fund was expected to have expenses of roughly $8.4 million. The fund, which is described as “not self-supporting,” was budgeted to receive $3.6 million from the county’s general fund in 2010.
The Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners approved the new fare policy on Nov. 15, 2011. The new fares will go into effect on Jan. 30, 2012.
Do you think covering a third of expenses is a reasonable goal or should public transit be entirely self-supporting? Tell us in the comments.