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SEPTA fare increase Credit: Lionel Nicolau

On Friday, SEPTA announced plans to raise fares by approximately six percent in its budget proposal for the next fiscal year, among other changes.

If approved, the fare hikes would be the agency’s first since 2007, and would take effect July 1. Under the proposal, the cost of a token — usable in SEPTA’s bus, subway and trolley systems — would rise from $1.45 to $1.55. The cash fare would remain the same, at $2.00 per ride, and the cost of a transfer would rise from $0.75 to $1.00.

The transit agency will hold a series of public hearings from April 14-20 on the proposed budget, after which the SEPTA board will vote to approve or deny it.

Though the changes, according to the proposal, will generate an estimated $22 million in additional revenue, SEPTA Chief Financial Officer Richard Burnfield told The Philadelphia Inquirer he expects ridership to decline almost two percent as a result of fare increases.

“Any time there’s a fare hike, there’s always some public displeasure over having to pay more, especially in this economy,” SEPTA Youth Advisory Council Chairman and College senior Phil Dawson said.

But Dawson said he expected the impact of hikes to be “minimal” for students, since token prices will only rise 10 cents and the cash fare will remain the same.

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