Tucson could soon have higher bus fares - Tucson News Now

Tucson could soon have higher bus fares

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

For the first time in five years, the city of Tucson may be raising its bus fares, although it does face opposition. 

Tucson City Manager, Michael Ortega, is recommending a plan which would raise rates 25 cents over two years and would raise $1.9 million a year in revenue for the general fund.

The money would be used to help plug a budget hole faced by the city, which is trying to make its way to a structured and balanced budget.

Part of the issue for Tucson transit is a lack of ridership. Ridership dropped significantly last year during a 43 day strike and has yet to rebound.

"No one expected a strike and certainly did not expect the impact the strike has on ridership," said Ortega. "Ridership has been and will continue to be a concern for us."

One reason why it has not come back is low gasoline prices. 

A second potential reason is because as the young generation of millennials becomes more affluent, it is driving more and taking transit less.

Several national studies bear this out and an RTA survey, yet to be released, may show that's also happening in Tucson.

The manager's recommendation is here.

Even though the final decision on rates will be made by the Mayor and council, the city manager feels that whether it comes from bus fees or somewhere else, the budget hole needs to be plugged and it needs to be a shared sacrifice.

"It's about the budget," Ortega said. "There needs to be some way to make up that lost revenue if fees are not increased."

Copyright 2016 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

  • Local newsMore>>

  • breaking

    Interim Superintendent appointed for TUSD

    Interim Superintendent appointed for TUSD

    Tuesday, March 28 2017 11:03 PM EDT2017-03-29 03:03:56 GMT
    Dr. Gabriel Trujillo, interim Superintendent for Tucson Unified School District. (Source: Tucson News Now)Dr. Gabriel Trujillo, interim Superintendent for Tucson Unified School District. (Source: Tucson News Now)

    This appointment is effective immediately, according to a TUSD tweet.  

    This appointment is effective immediately, according to a TUSD tweet.  

  • Rural fire districts prep for 2017 fire season

    Rural fire districts prep for 2017 fire season

    Tuesday, March 28 2017 8:57 PM EDT2017-03-29 00:57:58 GMT
    (Source: Tucson News Now)(Source: Tucson News Now)

    The Fire Chief Joseph De Wolf with Sonoita-Elgin Fire District said the rain was a relief but not a reason to relax, as fire season starts to heat up in southern Arizona. He said conditions are monitored daily because they could change just as quickly.

    The Fire Chief Joseph De Wolf with Sonoita-Elgin Fire District said the rain was a relief but not a reason to relax, as fire season starts to heat up in southern Arizona. He said conditions are monitored daily because they could change just as quickly.

  • EPA executive order impact in Arizona

    EPA executive order impact in Arizona

    Tuesday, March 28 2017 8:46 PM EDT2017-03-29 00:46:33 GMT
    (Source: Tucson News Now)(Source: Tucson News Now)

    While much of the attention is on President Trump's roll back of the Clean Power Plan, there will also be impacts which affect clean water policy as well.

    While much of the attention is on President Trump's roll back of the Clean Power Plan, there will also be impacts which affect clean water policy as well.

Powered by Frankly