MTA Not Worried About SBS Fare Evasion

For a few minutes this morning, I could not stop laughing. You are probably wondering what had me in near tears? The article in today’s New York Post by Tom Namako which talks about how the MTA is not worried about fare evasion on the new Select Bus Service route debuting on the east side of Manhattan later this year:

You won’t need a ticket to ride!

Wide-eyed MTA officials are hoping that riders on a new East Side express bus line will buy tickets before they board — even though nobody, except the occasional inspector, will be able to give them the boot for fare-beating.

Drivers will ask to see the tickets from riders on the new express M15 route — who are being trusted to buy tickets before they board in order to speed up the process — but will be powerless to enforce the fare.

Enforcement will be left up to a special MTA team, which has just 30 members.
The new route — which in October will run on First and Second avenues from 125th Street to Houston Street — is supposed to speed up trip lengths by ditching the time-consuming MetroCard dips.

Transit officials say the payment system has helped reduce fare-beating on the Fordham Road express line in The Bronx from 13 percent of riders per year — when fares were paid on board — to 10 percent.

Even Mayor Bloomberg is putting his trust in the riders.

“It’s to some extent an honor system,” Hizzoner said yesterday. “People pay. These are New Yorkers and, yes, there will always be a handful of people who cheat. There are a handful of people that cheat right now.

“Most people are honest, and the fact of the matter is, if you improve the service dramatically, you’ll get a lot more people using it, and the revenues will go up even if a handful of people cheat,” he added.

Click here for the complete report.

Honestly, who are they kidding? Fare Evasion has been a big problem with Select Bus Service so far as the New York Daily News has reported on a number of occasions. Even MTA New York City Transit expected fare evasion to be an issue with SBS as they said as much in April.

I hate to bring this up but are the faith sentiments in honesty stemming from the location of the service? It is widely known that fare evasion has been a problem in the Bronx on the Bx12’s Select Bus Service. Are the MTA & Mayor Bloomberg echoing so much faith because this service will be in Manhattan & serving more upscale neighborhoods?

I am not trying to offend anyone but I find it is a fair question considering the resounding faith being showed in the honesty system working in terms of fare collection. Most likely it is just misguided faith & not some underhanded class structure point. This is the same agency spending over $100M to rehab Jay Street yet will not repaint badly needed areas in the station as part of the work. I just wanted to put it out there as I could not be the only person to have seen this potential point.

xoxo Transit Blogger

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[…] Bus Service coming to the east side of Manhattan later this year. As I noted yesterday, the MTA is not worried about fare evasion on the upcoming service even though the agency admitted it would be a problem back in […]

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