Valley Metro might hike bus, train fares

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PHOENIX -- First they decided to cut more than 170 early and late bus trips, now the Valley Metro Board might raise fares in an effort to combat the budget crunch.

Decision to be made early next year
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The public transportation system is fund by a 1/2-cent sales tax. The problem is that revenue from the tax has dropped about 8 percent in August compared to the same time last year.

That means passengers will have to make up the difference.

A proposal to raise fares is expected to make its way to the board in January of February, with the first hike coming as soon as summer. That would be followed by a second increase in summer 2010.

According to the proposed change, local day passes would go from $2.50 to $4.50. Express day passes would go from $3.50 to $6.50.

The 31-day local passes would jump from $45 to $55, while 31-day express passes would go from $68 to $85.

In addition, single-trip fares would go to $1.75 from $1.25, and express fares would be $2.75, up from $1.75.

A decision is expected early next year.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.