Poughkeepsie Council to discuss increasing bus fares


POUGHKEEPSIE – The Poughkeepsie
Common Council, which is weighing Mayor Robert Rolison’s proposal
to transfer the city’s bus system to Dutchess County, Monday night,
will consider increasing fares as a means to keep the system independent
and cover future costs.

Lawmakers will also vote to establish a transportation strategy committee
comprised of council members and city residents to recommend ways to improve
the city system.

Council Chairman Christopher Petsas also wants members to consider a fare
increase of 25-cents to 50-cents per ride to raise additional revenue.

“If it helps subsidize the buses financially in a way that we are
able to, maybe invest a little more into them or just to basically keep
them under city control and watch, I think it is something the ridership
will go for,” he said.
Mayor Rolison’s proposed city budget includes funding the buses
for only half a year and then turning them over to Dutchess County to
merge with the county’s transportation system.

“I don’t see any benefit to increasing because you are looking
to have the riders pay more and you are trying to balance a system on
the backs of the ridership, which is declining anyway. I don’t see
how that is a good business decision,” he said.
Petsas said the Democratic majority on the council will present its proposed
amendments to the Republican mayor’s 2017 budget during this new