$1 Surcharge Designed To Cut Down On Production, Raise Millions In Revenue

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — If you want a new MetroCard, you might have to pony up a little more than just the fare.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has proposed adding a $1 “green fee.”

The MTA said it hopes it will encourage riders to refill their cards to avoid paying the dollar, thus cutting down on the 160 million MetroCards the agency prints up each year. The MTA’s main goal is to eliminate trash, 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg reported. Many MetroCards end up discarded on station floors.

WCBS 880’s John Metaxas On The Story

The proposed surcharge will also generate about $20 million a year, which will go into the agency’s operating budget. That includes an estimated $2 million saved by printing fewer MetroCards, CBS 2’s Cindy Hsu reported.

Many commuters said that paying a dollar for a new MetroCard is just too much.

“Too expensive. Way, way too expensive,” one man told WCBS 880’s John Metaxas.

“They’re crooks,” another added. “No more of this. I can’t do it. No more hikes.”

“Frustration and another way for them to dig into my pocket,” MetroCard user Dennis Moore told CBS 2’s Hsu.

“I think it’s a dumb idea. It’s more money that they’ll make that they’ll just waste and then the MTA will cry poverty,” Joe Detrano added.

1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg reports

But some commuters said the proposal is a good idea.

“It saves us, you know, the expense of  added paper and more printing and I think anything we can do to help our environment is a good thing,” Ilisa Pappell told CBS 2’s Hsu.

“It’s always good to reduce the amount of waste we’re putting out there,” Nancy Liguori said.

Torre Spears told Hsu that having to pay a surcharge would definitely cut down on the number of cards he uses.

“I have six cards at a time sometimes, so one card and recycle that one card, I think it’ll work well,” Spears said.

The MTA Board approved the surcharge back in 2010, but they haven’t been able to re-program all the MetroCard machines to add that extra charge, so there is no word on when the surcharge will take effect.

But when it does, more riders said they’ll be holding onto those cards a lot longer.

If you’re buying a new MetroCard because yours expired, the MTA said the surcharge would not be imposed, CBS 2’s Hsu reported.

What do you think of the proposal? Sound off in the comments section below.


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