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Study: Fare Cheats Cost MARTA Nearly $3.4M

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(credit: Jean Ross/WAOK-AM)

(credit: Jean Ross/WAOK-AM)

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ATLANTA (AP/WAOK) – A new study estimates that people who don’t pay for their subway or bus rides are costing metro Atlanta’s transit agency nearly $3.4 million annually.

The estimated revenue loss represents less than 1 percent of MARTA’s current budget, but officials said it still hurts.

MARTA’s chief operating officer, Rich Krisak, says spending an additional $2 million annually could reduce waiting times at rail stations by five minutes. Shorter waiting times could attract more riders, leading to more revenue for the agency.

The study concluded the rate of fare evasion on the rail system was around 2 percent. MARTA based its estimates on observations at rail stations and bus stops.

MARTA General Manager Keith Parker has formed a taskforce to study possible solutions.

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