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The State | IN BRIEF

Rider Loss May Mean Fare Increases for BART

February 15, 2003|From Times Wire Reports

SAN FRANCISCO — BART ridership is continuing to plunge, prompting the transit agency to consider fare increases and cost cuts to make up for lost revenue.

Weekday ridership has fallen from a high of 340,000 in spring 2000 to about 299,000 this month, and revenue from half-cent sales taxes in San Francisco, Alameda and Contra Costa counties also has dropped.

Financial analysts see ridership and sales tax rebounding during the next fiscal year, but BART still could face an estimated budget deficit of $734 million over the next 10 years.

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