BOSTON (CBS/AP) — The board that oversees the MBTA approved a budget that calls for an average 23 percent fare increase and service cuts on Wednesday.

The changes were approved by a 4-1 vote.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports

The fare hikes will kick in on July 1.

Dozens of people spoke out against the proposed plan earlier in the day.

A small group of protesters gathered at the state transportation building before the meeting of the T’s board of directors began early Wednesday afternoon. The protesters chanted “no cuts, no hikes.”

Lee Matsueda, head of the T Riders Union, said before the vote that he expected the board to approve the changes.

T officials say the changes are needed to close an estimated $159 million deficit. After the vote, several opponents shouted to the board “shame on you.”

The proposed plan is less severe than earlier scenarios calling for fare increases of up to 43 percent and more extensive cuts in service.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (13)
  1. smash44 says:

    Maybe start with bus drivers who make $100,000 a year plus OT. Just maybe. And don’l all MBTA employees ride for free?

  2. Monkey says:

    For once I would like to hear them discuss cost-cutting measures other than serive cuts. I have not heard them once address labor costs. They are NOT acting like a company that is financially strapped!

    I blame weak management and the damn unions for the high pay and over-the-top beneifts that most others do not get. And THE PUBLIC is paying for it!!!

  3. Mea says:

    23% isn’t as bad as I thought it would be. However, I do agree, they should look at how they can cut costs too so that fare hikes don’t continue to happen. -Mea

  4. Rob Cleary says:

    Make it 100% self sufficient or shut it down. NO MORE COMMUTER WELFARE.

  5. Ed Dracut says:

    This is Mass they wilkl NEVER EVER ask a UNION to take a pay cut. Evene if it meant the T would go bankrupt. The T only in the near future had to balance the books. They would go the the state for money and the morons that at the state house would rubber stamp what they need for cash. Sucks now don’t it????

  6. Vera Carroll says:

    I am so glad that I no longer rely on the MBTA to get me to and from work.

  7. sean says:

    I have to agree with monkey, they’re making cuts that affect the people that keep it in business, but they aren’t making any corporate cuts. Seems that the unions have the MBTA by the balls for a lack of a better term so they can’t go after any workers. Look at how many time the T has tried firing someone for something like drug use, abusing sick pay, etc., just to have the employee get their job back thanks to the union. Unions were started as a good thing, but unions like the ones representing the T have gotten out of hand. It’s surprising any T workers actually care about their job since they know they have job safety no matter what they do.

  8. 1stackmack says:

    maybe its time for riders to pay there fare share.the cost of everything is up if you haven’t tire a bus is over $500 with taxes an fee’s,and there 6 ( 10 on the bend e buses ).fuel is $4.25 a gallion,and these aren’t priuses at 4 dig a little deeper kids and suck it up.or you’ll lose your ride permanently.

  9. JJ says:

    These protesters want everyone in the state to “chip in” for thier rides, Well, on the cape where everyone pays MORE for thier electricity, forced to pay MORE for this green energy windmills that noone wants except for the investors and the recipients of trinkets, maybe, EVERYONE in the state should get the brunt of these expensive windmills that are supplied with FREE AIR.

  10. Lisa says:

    Why isn’t channel 4 covering the 10-day sit in at the state house to press the legislature to consider long-term solutions to the T’s funding problems? The recent fare hikes/service cuts were only a bandaid to balance this year’s budget. It will only happen again next year without a real solution.

    As an office worker who commutes to Boston every day, I hope the media continue focusing on this very important issue!

  11. Foolishness says:

    Stop the bloated union wages/benefits and cut unncessary management staff. Problems solved. Oh wait, unions run the show…. I forgot, silly me. Let’s do a government bailout instead so the taxpayers continue to pay for all this nonsense. Welcome to Mass

  12. dan says:


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