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Policy cuts Butler bus fare evasion by half

At its executive board meeting on Tuesday, July 9, the Butler Transit Authority reported that while annual trips have increased, fare evasion has not.

During its May meeting, the Butler Transit Authority voted to implement a policy that would decrease fare evasion. Before the policy was implemented, bus drivers had to continue to allow people to ride the buses, while some drivers paid part or all of the fare for riders who didn’t have enough money.

“We, last month, adopted a new short fare policy, and that policy was that if individuals didn’t pay their full fare, the drivers would basically give a receipt to that individual saying how much they owed,” said John Paul, executive director of Butler Transit Authority.

He said fare evasions have decreased by about 50% since the new policy was implemented.

“In that short time frame, we’ve cut that short fare almost in half, so that’s pretty successful,” Paul said. “And I credit the drivers for enforcing it, because it’s not a pleasant thing.”

According to the Butler Transit Authority’s Code of Conduct Policy, individuals would either be asked to leave the bus or receive a receipt of nonpayment at the bus driver’s discretion. After receiving their written notification of nonpayment indicating how much they owed, the individual would then be required to go to the Butler Transit Authority Terminal on West New Castle Street and pay the balance within 24 hours of receiving the notice.

Failure to pay the fee would result in a three-day suspension from using Butler Transit Authority services, according to Paul. If a person fails to comply with the suspension by trying to use authority services during the time of their suspension, the person will be considered a trespasser, he said.

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