Transit authority proposes increasing Runabout fares
Increase is due to increased demand, representative says
Regional Transit Authority presented a proposal to increase Runabout fares at the Paso Robles City Council meeting on Tuesday. RTA Special Projects Coordinator Michael Seden-Hansen said the fare hike is to due to increased demand. He said that even though the Runabout fare increased in 2010, service levels have increased 57 percent. The annual cost to provide Runabout service in the county is equal to the fixed-route services that carry approximately 15 times as many passengers.
“In order to use Runabout … riders must first submit an application [signed by a doctor stating] that they have a physical disability that keeps them from using fixed route service,” Seden-Hansen said.
The fares will increase between 25 cents and $3.25, making the fares equal to two times that of the fixed-route service, but being capped at $10, which is two times the cost of a day pass for fixed-routes.
According to Seden-Hansen, fixed-route services carry 760,000 passengers annually and Runabout carries 44,000 annually. He said both services will need to be cut if nothing is done to address the increased demand. The current fares are lower than allowed by federal law — which allows for Runabout to charge twice the fixed-route fare — and in some instances are lower than fixed-route fares.
RTA will hold three public workshops in October to gather input from the community. All workshops will be held from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
- Tuesday, Oct. 14 at Grover Beach Ramona Garden Park Community Center
- Wednesday, Oct. 15. at Atascadero City Hall Room 106
- Thursday, Oct. 16 at San Luis Obispo Library Community Room
At the workshops, the fare tables will be presented, including the current fares. Additionally, members of the public, especially those affected by the fare increases, are encouraged to give feedback on the hike.
“I encourage you to contact me to tell us how this Runabout fare increase proposal would affect you,” RTA Executive Director Geoff Straw wrote in a letter sent to all Runabout users sent on Sept. 15.
Besides giving input at one of the workshops, those wishing to give input can also call RTA at 781-4472, email firstname.lastname@example.org or send a letter to 179 Cross St., Ste. A, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401. More information may also be found at www.slorta.org.