Frustrated And Beaten-Down Public Asks 'What Else Are They Going To Take?'

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Metropolitan Transportation Authority said Thursday it may no longer be able to afford to give New Yorkers a break at MetroCard machines.

The 70-cent bonus you get for every $10 you put on your MetroCard may soon be history.

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The chairman of the MTA, Joseph Lhota, declared “Do we really need to give that level of a discount?”

“What else are they going to take away from us?” Nathan Stock, of Manhattan, asked CBS 2’s Steve Langford.

A beaten-down public didn’t react well to word the MTA’s equivalent of the baker’s dozen may soon be toast.

“It’ll cause chaos, like everybody will be upset about it,” Imani Felton said.

“I, myself, am a dancer. I don’t make a lot of money and so the discounts are like what help get me around,” said Debra Bona, of New Jersey

It’s not just a matter of likely losing the MetroCard discount, the MTA is also set to announce a fare increase that will take effect in March.

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The original MetroCard discount, 15 percent, was chopped less than two years ago down to the current 7 percent and now the MTA’s latest plan will only make New York even more expensive.

“You know for many people, unlimited rides aren’t the answer. They don’t use the system enough to justify a 30- or 7-day pass,” said Gene Russianoff of the Straphangers Campaign.

The MTA — in the middle of an unprecedented and monumentally expensive period of expansion from the Second Avenue subway to the extension of the 7 Train to East Side access to Grand Central — is prompting a precious few to take talk of the elimination of the MetroCard discount in stride.

“I actually agree with it,” said Dan Trebowski of Manhattan.

The MTA said it will hold public hearings in November concerning fare increases and dropping MetroCard discounts.

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