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DART News Release

Media Relations Contact:
Morgan Lyons

April 04, 2001

Public Hearing Tuesday, April 10

DART Proposes Streamlined Pass and Ticket Programs

DART has scheduled a Public Hearing for April 10 to discuss proposed changes in its fare structure.

Base cash fares will remain the same. Proposed modifications affect ticket, pass and transfer policies, and include expanded use of Day Passes and modifications to the popular employeE-Pass program.

The changes will help the transit agency prevent fare evasion and avoid a general fare increase. The modifications also will make it more convenient for customers to transfer between DART buses and trains. The hearing will be conducted during the regular meeting of the DART Board of Directors at DART Headquarters, 1401 Pacific. The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m.

"We're committed to low fares," DART President/Executive Director Roger Snoble said. "We've not had a fare change since 1995 and we want to take steps that will help generate income without an overall fare increase."

There are six parts to the proposed fare policy change:

  1. Sell Day Passes on DART buses and eliminate the distribution of transfer slips to bus riders changing to other bus routes or trains to reach their final destinations.

  2. Increase the Monthly Pass for students and seniors from $10 to $15.

  3. Provide free bus and rail service to certified paratransit customers with disabilities.

  4. Eliminate the 11-ride Bonus Pak.

  5. Modify employeE-Pass pricing for major employers, and offer discounts to member city government agencies.

  6. Eliminate the $2 discount employers currently receive when purchasing monthly passes, and introduce a money-saving individual Annual Pass.

Day Pass Expands
Since about half of all DART customers buy regular monthly passes, most won't notice any change with the new fare policy. The biggest difference involves the sale of Day Passes on buses and the elimination of transfer slips traditionally distributed to bus riders who need to change to other bus routes or trains to reach their final destinations.

With the new fare policy, bus riders paying cash fares and wishing to make transfers would purchase a Day Pass when they board the first bus. The Day Pass is good for unlimited rides on DART buses and trains until 3 a.m. the next morning.

New Discounted Fare Still a Bargain
Although DART's local Monthly Pass for seniors and students would increase from $10 to $15 dollars, riders still would realize a 66-percent savings compared to local cash fares and an 83-percent savings compared to premium or two-zone cash fares.

Paratransit Customers With Disabilities Ride Bus and Rail Free
As part of the proposed fare change, certified paratransit customers with disabilities would ride fixed route bus and rail services for free, just by presenting their DART Paratransit identification cards. Presently these customers must purchase a ticket or pass to ride buses and trains.

Corporate Customers Get a Break
DART proposes the elimination of the $2 discount employers currently receive on Monthly Passes, and the introduction of a discounted annual pass for businesses.

For many businesses, the convenient DART employeE-Pass -- an annual pass good for unlimited rides on buses and trains -- is a great employee benefit. More than 40 companies and 20,000 employees currently use the employeE-Pass. employeE-Passes will be available for as little as $30 per employee per year.

To encourage member city government agencies to purchase the employeE-Pass, DART will offer those organizations a 25-percent discount.

Next Steps
DART's Board of Directors is scheduled to vote on the proposed fare changes at its April 24 meeting. Changes would become effective later this year.

Persons with questions or comments about the proposed fare policy change may call DART Community Affairs, 214-749-2543.

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