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User Fees

April 6, 2007 | David Reyes, Times Staff Writer
Along with death and taxes, commuters on the 91 Freeway may never be able to escape rush-hour congestion and rising tolls. Starting today, it will cost drivers as much as $9.50 to use the Express Lanes to get from Orange County to Riverside County -- or nearly a buck a mile. The new top fare, up a quarter from the last rate increase in January, places the 10-mile toll road among the most expensive in the country. It has doubled since 2002. Denver-area motorists pay $9.
March 23, 2007 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Bus and commuter train fares would go up significantly under hikes proposed Thursday by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. To deal with a projected $1-billion budget deficit, transit officials are proposing a fare increase effective July 1, and a second increase Jan. 1, 2009. The regular cash fare for bus and rail lines would remain $1.25 until 2009, when it would increase to $2. Day passes would increase from $3 to $5 in July, and to $8 by 2009.
March 2, 2007 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The state Department of Health Services has scaled back a fee increase for medical marijuana identification cards after an outcry. The annual ID card fee, which was to rise from the current $13 to $142 on Thursday, will instead jump to $66 starting April 1. Medi-Cal patients will pay $33. Though the state has issued about 10,000 ID cards, more than half the counties -- including Los Angeles, San Diego and Orange -- have not joined in.
March 1, 2007 | Jim Puzzanghera, Times Staff Writer
Despite vowing not to raise their prices, the nation's only two satellite radio providers found their proposed merger to be a tough sell Wednesday on Capitol Hill. "You've got some high hurdles to overcome, don't you think?" House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) told Mel Karmazin, chief executive of Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. Karmazin, who would run the new company if federal regulators approve Sirius' proposed merger with XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc.
August 9, 2006 | Greg Johnson, Times Staff Writer
A federal judge Tuesday ruled that Major League Baseball and its players' union can't force the operator of a St. Louis-based fantasy sports league to pay licensing fees for baseball statistics used in its business. U.S. Magistrate Mary Ann L. Medler, in a 49-page decision, said that C.B.C. Distribution and Marketing Inc. didn't need a license to operate its fantasy baseball business because MLB players are public figures and statistics from big-league games are in the public domain.
August 3, 2006 | Thomas S. Mulligan and Chris Gaither, Times Staff Writers
In a move that marks a watershed moment for the Internet, AOL, which made millions of dollars connecting consumers to the information superhighway, will soon be free. The service, which lured millions of people to the Internet for the first time and was the driver behind history's biggest media merger, will drop access fees for anyone with a high-speed connection beginning in September, AOL's parent company, Time Warner Inc., announced Wednesday.
June 29, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Targeting a top gripe by cellphone users and breaking ranks with its industry, Verizon Wireless plans to prorate the fee it charges subscribers who break a contract so they only pay an amount proportional to the time left on their agreements. The change in the early termination fee will be implemented this fall for new customers and Verizon Wireless subscribers who sign a new contract, the company said Wednesday. The company, owned jointly by New York-based Verizon Communications Inc.
October 22, 2005 | From Bloomberg News
Yahoo Inc. said it would raise the price for its Music Unlimited subscription service by 72% for users who transfer songs to portable music players. The monthly subscription price will rise on Nov. 1 to $11.99 a month from $6.99 a month. The increase brings the cost closer to the $14.99-a-month prices of offerings from RealNetworks Inc. and Napster Inc.
February 7, 2005 | David Colker, Times Staff Writer
With many of EBay Inc.'s most faithful sellers in revolt over a rate hike, the online auctioneer said Sunday that it would lower one type of seller fee starting today. If that's supposed to be a peace offering, sellers aren't buying it. The fee break is on the cost of listing an auction item on the site, from 30 cents to 25 cents. But there's a catch -- it applies only to listings that start bidding at 99 cents or less, which are usually for items such as used CDs.
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